In 2011, adventurer and conservationist John Davis walked, cycled, skied, canoed, and kayaked on an epic 10-month, 7,600-mile journey that took him from the keys of Florida to a remote seashore in northeastern Quebec. Davis was motivated by a dream: to see a continent-long corridor conserved for wildlife in the eastern United States, especially for the large carnivores so critical to the health of the land.
In Big, Wild, and Connected, we travel the Eastern Wildway with Davis, viscerally experiencing the challenges large carnivores, with their need for vast territories, face in an ongoing search for food, water, shelter, and mates. On his self-propelled journey, Davis explores the wetlands, forests, and peaks that are the last strongholds for wildlife in the East. This includes strategically important segments of disturbed landscapes, from longleaf pine savanna in the Florida Panhandle to road-latticed woods of Pennsylvania. Despite the challenges, Davis argues that creation of an Eastern Wildway is within our reach and would serve as a powerful symbol of our natural and cultural heritage.
Big, Wild, and Connected reveals Eastern landscapes through wild eyes, a reminder that, for the creatures with which we share the land, movement is as essential to life as air, water, and food. Davis’ journey shows that a big, wild, and connected network of untamed places is the surest way to ensure wildlife survival through the coming centuries.