We are dedicated to educating people about the preservation and protection of coastal wildlife along the Jersey Shore.


Our Beginning


Increasing challenges to the health and sustainability of coastal wildlife and the need for greater environmental education about the Jersey Shore led a handful of New Jersey residents in 2017 to create a new nonprofit wildlife preservation organization. Save Coastal Wildlife was founded as a way to educate an ever-growing, transient, and diverse group of New Jersey residents and visitors about the biodiversity and protection of coastal animals, plants, and ecosystems in one of the most densely populated coastlines in the world. In addition, there was a wish to increase hands-on opportunities in citizen-science research/monitoring projects about coastal species and related ecosystems, and to create programs for the general public to help restore estuarine-marine habitat.

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The Problem


Federal and NJ State Environmental protection laws put in place over the past 40 or more years, and countless efforts by volunteers and nonprofit organizations have helped to create a cleaner environment and a rich mixture of vital habitat for plants and animals along the Jersey Shore. Unfortunately, ever expanding urban and suburban development, and the continuing effects of global climate change, are dwindling the results of former success stories and quickly putting pressure on many coastal species in New Jersey. Numerous species of wild animals are exhibiting signs of stress and loss from human population growth, pollution, and poorly planned coastal development. Researchers are often finding stagnant or declining populations of horseshoe crabs, diminishing populations of nesting and migratory shorebirds, such as piping plovers, least terns, and red knots, and fish populations that are fragile or failing, including menhaden, river herring, weakfish and winter flounder. A number of whales and sea turtles are also frequently being found injured or dead from colliding with cargo ships or from becoming tangled up in fishing gear. Additionally, quite a few diamondback terrapins every year are getting trapped in crab pots or traps while foraging for food or are getting run over by vehicles as they cross roads to seek nesting sites.

Additionally, many forms of litter including cigarette butts, plastic bottles, bags, and wrappers, Styrofoam, and bottle caps are increasing and are regularly being found on beaches, in wetlands, and in coastal communities. Litter is affecting coastal wildlife, who accidentally swallow or feed litter to their young. Balloons, an item frequently found on beaches or in the water, are accidentally being eaten by whales and sea turtles, where it can clog an animal’s digestive tract, making it impossible for an animal to eat normally. Fishing line and rope, found in high numbers in the water and on beaches, are also entangling marine life each year to cause injury or death.


Threats to Coastal Wildlife:


Over 30

animals that breed, migrate or overwinter along the Jersey Shore are listed by the State of New Jersey as endangered, threatened, or a species of special concern including several species of whales, sea turtles, and coastal birds.

Over 70%

of seabird populations have declined in the past 50 years in the United States as they compete with people for food and space to rest and feed during migration.

Over 600%

is the percentage of tidal flood events that have increased in the past 60 years along the Jersey Shore due to sea level rise and global warming.


On Saturday, June 15, 2019, volunteers with Save Coastal Wildlife found a male horseshoe crab entangled in fishing line along Raritan Bay, NJ.

Our Mission


We take action through education. Save Coastal Wildlife is a 501(c)(3) non-profit wildlife preservation organization that is dedicated to educating people about coastal wildlife and the importance of protecting the ocean and estuaries and keeping our beaches clean, with a particular focus on the Jersey Shore (from Raritan Bay down to Delaware Bay).

From our many volunteer citizen science research and restoration projects, and educational outreach activities, including monitoring horseshoe crab populations every spring along Sandy Hook Bay and Raritan Bay (one of the longest run and largest citizen-science projects in Monmouth County, NJ) , members of Save Coastal Wildlife work to educate many people throughout the year towards the need to protect coastal wildlife and their habitat.

Save Coastal Wildlife is made up of educators, conservationists, scientists, naturalists, community leaders, animal lovers and many other people devoted to the protection of the Jersey Shore’s fragile coastal ecosystem and wildlife inhabitants. We bring a variety of experiences together to serve a common goal.

Find out more about Save Coastal Wildlife →


Volunteers with Save Coastal Wildlife, a wildlife conservation nonprofit, installed an osprey platform near Matawan Creek, NJ on Saturday morning, March 30, 2019

Get Involved


Are you ready to help? We cannot save coastal wildlife alone. We need everyone, including you! Help support the ongoing efforts of Save Coastal Wildlife and our specific research and conservation efforts. Please consider making a donation to help fund our many citizen-science and educational programs. Volunteering with Save Coastal Wildlife is also a great way to help the coastal critters you love while making friends and having fun.

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“Nature holds the key to our aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive and even spiritual satisfaction.”
— Edward O Wilson