LINC is helping to raise awareness of the real opportunity to protect a connected corridor of natural land and water across the north-south length of Florida. LINC is a contributing partner to The Florida Wildlife Corridor project and is bringing its mission to life through art and imagery.
From the Everglades to the Okefenokee Swamp: 1,000 miles in 100 days
In 2012, four explorers traveled 1000 miles in 100 days, from the Everglades to Okefenokee Swamp in southern Georgia. Their goal: to raise awareness of the real possibility to protect and restore connected landscapes throughout the Florida Peninsula and create a viable corridor from the Everglades to Georgia.
Bear biologist Joe Guthrie, conservationist Mallory Lykes Dimmitt, photojournalist Carlton Ward Jr., and award-winning cinematographer Elam Stoltzfus, traversed the wildlife habitats, watersheds and participating working farms and ranches, which comprise the Florida Wildlife Corridor opportunity area. But, it wasn't just the four members of the Expedition on this incredible journey. State agency personnel, artists, elected and appointed officials, journalists, historians, and countless other Floridians interested in the future of their homeland traveled along with the Expedition Team at different points between the Everglades and the Florida-Georgia line.
Perhaps you followed the Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition's 100 day trek up peninsular Florida via weekly radio stories. Maybe you interacted with the Expedition Team through social media or joined them on a portion of their way–hiking, kayaking, cycling, slogging or horseback riding.
If not, you can still experience the Expedition first hand through the film produced by LINC Affiliate Artist Elam Stoltzfus, “Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition: Everglades to Okefenokee,” and through the book which shares stunning photographs by Expedition Leader Carlton Ward Jr. and essays by fellow explorers. The film documents the adventures of the Expedition Team exploring the Florida Wildlife Corridor. It recently finished a nation-wide tour of public television stations, and will continue to be shown around the state.
The Florida Wildlife Corridor expands on decades of work by numerous conservation organizations and a scientific foundation provided by the Florida Ecological Greenways Network (FEGN), spearheaded by Larry Harris and Reed Noss. The Corridor vision combines all of the FEGN Critical Linkages from the Everglades to Okefenokee to highlight the importance of protecting a functional network of public and private conservation lands to protect our native biodiversity, essential ecosystem services, and the rural natural heritage that is so unique to Florida. Corridors necessary for wildlife migration are also working landscapes important to Florida agriculture, ranching, timber production, and a way of life.
As a communications partner for the Florida Wildlife Corridor vision, LINC focused the efforts of 14 conservation photographers on the Critical Linkages, bringing awareness to the highest priority needs to connect the Florida Wildlife Corridor. LINC showcased the Critical Linkages and the photographers who documented important parcels within through the blog series, “ A View From the Other Side of the Lens ,” and produced an interactive map-based GeoStory using National Geographic’s platform.
LINC is currently working with the Florida Wildlife Corridor Team to plan and promote a second, 2014 Expedition, which will traverse the Green Swamp, Big Bend Region, and Florida Panhandle to complete a statewide Florida Wildlife Corridor.
Relive the Journey
Expedition DVD and Book Now Available
Planning of the 2014 Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition will expand upon the publicity surrounding the need for a connected corridor of conserved lands and waters throughout the state of Florida. The 2014 Expedition will connect the Panhandle with the 2012 Expedition route. Check back for more information as the planning process is underway.