The idea of linking Algonquin Provincial Park and Adirondack Park ecologically across the Frontenac Axis has been ongoing since the early 1990s when conservationists first envisioned a connected and sustainable series of ecosystems anchored by the two great parks. Satellite images of the area clearly show greater tree cover in this area compared with elsewhere in Ontario and New York State. Roads are fewer here; the Thousand Islands provide stepping stones across the St. Lawrence River. Beyond its limits, A2A connects northern Canada's boreal forest with the Appalachian Mountains down to the Georgia, in the U.S.
The A2A region is the most important area for connectivity east of the Rocky Mountains.
Through the A2A vision, we look at this landscape in a new way — as beetles, birds and bears do, without the imposition of borders, so movement may be unimpeded from park to park.
Connectivity of the A2A landscape can be achieved by preserving and restoring natural habitat — not in an unbroken line like a corridor, but as scattered patches, fence lines, river margins, wetlands and woodlots.
A2A is based on the idea of land stewardship and cooperation with those whose lives and livelihood are rooted in the area. Many people who live in this landscape have roots that go back many generations, and they are strong advocates of the land.
These projects focus on large-landscape planning and connectivity as a means of protecting ecosystems and wildlife and promoting sustainable land use and stewardship.
Ontario Nature's Greenway Initiative
To protect nature in southern Ontario's crowded landscape, Ontario Nature created the Greenway Initiative, which focuses on protecting and restoring a connected landscape of cores and corridors. Among the initiative's goals: restore large areas of natural heritage; ensure water systems remain clean and intact; provide habitat for wildlife and species-at-risk; connect farmers, conservationists and communities; and, keep natural areas healthy for present and future generations.
The Big Picture, Carolinian Canada
Analysis led by Carolinian Canada uses conservation science and information management technology to identify core natural areas and potential habitat corridors in southwestern Ontario's Carolinian zone. The resulting Natural Heritage System provides direction for land use planning, stewardship, incentives, wildlife protection and securing of key habitats through acquisition.
In North America
Yellowstone-to-Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y)
Established in 1997, Y2Y is a joint Canada-US not-for-profit organization that seeks to preserve and maintain the wildlife, native plants, wilderness and natural processes of the mountainous region from Yellowstone National Park to the Yukon Territory. Y2Y's offices are located in Canmore, Alberta and Bozeman, Montana.
Baja, California to the Bering Sea (B2B)
In 2005, Marine Conservation Biology Institute and the Commission for Environmental Cooperation released a study highlighting 28 important places to protect along the North American coastline. The conservation model resulting from this work focuses on doing marine conservation at a continental scale and also contains a framework for the first cooperative efforts in marine conservation among Mexico, the US and Canada.
Since 1991, the Wildlands Network has focused on completing four Continental Wildways — large protected landscapes for wildlife movement — spanning North America’s coasts: Eastern, Western, Pacific and Boreal. Using scientifically based planning tools, the organization's primary objectives are to find the gaps in the Wildways and to mobilize the conservation community.
Click to see Ontario Nature's
Click to learn more about Y2Y
Click to learn about the Wildlands Network