Boonton is a fascinating town that lies in the heart of Northern New Jersey. It is known for many things such as its history, iron works, food, schools, art galleries, sports and people.
However, Boonton is probably not well known for its wildlife. That’s unfortunate because Boonton is home to a wide variety of species.
I have photographed many of these species in order to show people some of the incredible creatures that call this place home.
This is a photo of a large whitetail buck swimming in the Boonton Reservoir, which is a sprawling body of water, covering 700 acres in our town and Parsippany.
Believe it or not, deer are actually pretty good swimmers. Deer will swim if they need to escape predators or explore new territories.
Mature bucks can weigh more than 300 pounds. According to Wikipedia, white-tailed deer are known to be shy and reclusive.
I shot this photo in mid August 2021 at 11:30 a.m.
This unusual-looking critter is a short-tailed shrew. The shrew is a very small mammal often confused with a mouse. It is one of the smallest mammals in America.
Despite its fuzzy appearance, the shrew is a fearsome predator, feeding on insects, worms and, sometimes, mice.
This particular shrew has a venomous bite which it uses to paralyzes its prey.
Shrews are seldom seen because they lead a solitary lifestyle underneath leaves and rocks on the forest floor.
This photo was taken in August 2021 in the woods next to the Rockaway River.
John Van Saders, Class of 2022, has a passion for nature and the outdoors. His photos of the wildlife of Boonton will appear periodically throughout the school year.