Ground Covered: A History of the Florida Wildlife Expeditions
During the first expedition, bear biologist Joe Guthrie, conservationist Mallory Lykes Dimmitt, photojournalist Carlton Ward Jr., and filmmaker Elam Stoltzfus trekked 1000 miles for 100 days from the Everglades National Park toward Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge in southern Georgia. The travelers traversed the wildlife habitats, watersheds, and participating working farms and ranches that comprise the Florida Wildlife Corridor opportunity area.
The team documented the corridor through photography, video streams, radio reports, daily updates on social media and digital networks. They also organized a host of activities for reporters, landowners, celebrities, conservationists, politicians and other guests. Award-winning cinematographer Elam Stoltzfus documented the expedition to produce a film about the journey and the Florida Wildlife Corridor.
On January 10, 2015 we launched the Glades to Gulf Expedition, a second 1000-mile leg of the Corridor from Central Florida to the Gulf Coast, through the Big Bend, and across the Panhandle all the way to Alabama, where our trek concluded at the Gulf Islands National Seashore. We highlighted stories of ecological importance, including Longleaf Pine restoration and the health of the Gulf fishery, expanding the statewide corridor vision west to Alabama.
The journey was documented the entire way, using social media to showcase imagery and reporting from the field. We hosted a series of Saturday “Trail Mixers,” where the public was invited to join the Expedition team to participate in our trek.
A Weekly Perspective
January 11, 2015
January 18, 2015
January 25, 2015
February 1, 2015
February 8. 2015
February 15, 2015
February 22, 2015
March 1, 2015
March 8, 2015
March 15, 2015
March 22, 2015
March 29, 2015
Video Shorts by Joe Davenport
We invite you to enjoy these three videos filmed during the Expedition. Each portrays a unique and distinctive view of reasons to help protect the corridor “for the health of people, wildlife, and watersheds.”
Florida’s Beautiful but Inhospitable Springs
March 6, 2015 – Manatee Springs no longer has the resources to support its namesake. The once abundant eel grass and other aquatic vegetation are now overrun by algae. Still beautiful, but with lower diversity of life.
Inside a Third-Generation Oysterman’s Tough Trade
April 10, 2015 – Kendall Schoelles is the third generation of his family to earn their living from oysters in Apalachicola Bay. He knows what affects the mollusks and, even though the oil didn’t reach the Bay, the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill had an impact the oyster beds here.
Frog-Licking and Other Florida Wonders
May 28, 2015 – Florida herpetologist Bruce Means highlights some of the many animal species that rely on Florida’s few remaining longleaf pine ecosystems.
Our continued thanks to all our sponsors who made the 2015 Expedition possible.
Cantonis Family Foundation
Renee Athey & Tito Vargas
AJ Velasquez Graphic Design
Coastal Wine & Spirits
Flying Fish Bicycles
St. Pete Brewing Company
Suwannee Guides & Outfitters
Tampa Bay Automobile Museum
Tampa Bay Outfitters
Tampa Bay Magazine
Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida with the support of Dick and Cornelia Corbett
Community Foundation of Tampa Bay (via the generosity of the Alex Williams Family Fund, John T. Touchton Jr. and Susan L. Touchton Fund, J. Thomas and Lavinia Witt Touchton Fund, Ferman Community Advancement Fund, and the Hunt and Molly James Family Foundation)
The Doyle Family
Share the 2012 Experience: Own the Documentary DVD or Book
You can now experience the lessons learned on the 2012 expedition from the comfort of your own home. You will learn about wide-ranging wildlife like the Florida black bear and Florida panther and meet the gladesmen, cowboys and other heroes who work to protect the corridor for us all.
The DVD features a collection of stories and experiences woven together in a documentary format. It includes extra video stories and a music video. Produced by Elam Stoltzfus, featured on PBS TV.
The Book, Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition, Everglades to Okeefenokee: 1000 Miles in 100 Days, shares stunning photographs by Carlton Ward Jr and essays by fellow explorers to bring the story to life in vivid detail. Travel with them to discover the rivers, swamps, prairies, springs and forests, cattle ranchers, and timberlands.
Or view it right now on Vimeo’s On Demand page. Rent is $4.99 and to buy is $12.99.