Phenology is the study of the timing of life cycle events, such as plant flowering and animal migrations. Resource managers and citizen scientists are studying phenological events in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Warmer spring temperatures have also led beetles, moths and butterflies to emerge earlier than in recent years. Similarly, hibernating species like frogs and bears emerge from hibernation earlier in warm springs.
All species don’t respond to warming the same way. When species that depend on one another — such as pollinating insects and plants seeking pollination – don’t respond similarly to changing conditions, populations suffer.
In Japan, the spring-flowering ephemeral Corydalis ambiguaproduces fewer seeds than in previous decades because it now flowers earlier than when bumblebees, its primary pollinators, are active. Similarly, populations of pied flycatchers – long-distance migrating birds that still arrive at their breeding grounds at the regular time – are declining steeply, because populations of caterpillars that the flycatchers eat now peak prior to the birds’ arrival.
This article originally appeared at Mongabay.com and is republished here under CC BY-ND 4.0 license. According to the seventh annual special report by the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society (BAMS) probing the causal links between rising global temperatures and extreme weather events, issued last month, climate change made the Northern Great Plains drought of 2017 some […]
By Janice Cantieri This article originally appeared in Medill Reports Chicago, December 7, 2016. Republished with permission. In Alexi Correa’s coastal town of Loiza, Puerto Rico, families are raising their furniture on milk crates and building second floors onto their concrete homes to adapt to frequent flooding caused by sea level rise. They are witnessing […]
Top Photo: Crossing an increasingly unfamiliar landscape in Nain, Canada. By Ashlee Cunsolo. Authors: Neville Ellis, University of Western Australia and Ashlee Cunsolo, Memorial University of Newfoundland We are living in a time of extraordinary ecological loss. Not only are human actions destabilising the very conditions that sustain life, but it is also increasingly clear […]