Walking for Wildlife

Following P-22’s Footsteps for Urban Wildlife Week

We often take for granted the variety of transportation and travel routes made available to us. People can travel by foot, bike, car, train, plane, and boat, just to name a few. Wildlife do not have this luxury; they must rely on their natural instincts and physical abilities to get around — which can be difficult and dangerous in urban settings.

image002As part of Urban Wildlife Week which starts October 16, a group led by the National Wildlife Federation’s California Regional Executive Director, Beth Pratt Bergstrom and partners is embarking on an almost 50-mile hike to raise awareness for the importance of wildlife corridors in cities and towns to allow wildlife the ability to travel safely through their range. A rally at the site of a proposed wildlife crossing over the 101 freeway in Agoura Hills will kick off the walk.

Too often, wildlife are killed by cars or displaced because their habitat is divided by man-made roadways. In California, this issue is represented by the cougars of Los Angeles, some of which have been killed crossing the road. P-22, a male mountain lion and face of the #SaveLACougars campaign, is well-known in the region for his successful crossing of two major busy highways to reach his current home in the middle of Los Angeles.

As part of Urban Wildlife Week, Beth and a group of partners will hike for three and a half days through the Santa Monica Mountains and Los Angeles – taking a similar path to the one that P-22 may have followed.

The hike route

Follow the group as they hike P-22’s trail

Their journey, which can be tracked worldwide via urbanwildlifeweek.org, will illustrate how the promise of connectivity is integral not just for the future of mountain lions, but for wildlife as small as salamanders, birds and butterflies.

At the end of the hike, a free Urban Wildlife Festival will be hosted in Griffith Park. The event is free and open to the public — don’t miss the full schedule of activities, such as a virtual reality experience of a wildlife crossing, a Bioblitz Dance, a ranger lead walk, live music, delicious food, and more! We invite you to join the fun:

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Follow along when the group begins its hike next Wednesday on October 19th!

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