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.
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 […]
By Sue Branford and Maurício Torres This article originally appeared on Mongabay.com, 6 November 2017 (Republished under under Creative Commons BY-NC-ND). A new study finds the world’s tropical forests may no longer be carbon sinks, with a net loss of 425 million tons of carbon from 2003 to 2014. Also, 1.1 billion metric tons of carbon is […]
Article by Justin Catanoso All graphics by Rights and Resources Initiative (CC BY 4.0) Researchers have released what they called “the most comprehensive assessment to date of carbon storage” on forested lands occupied by indigenous peoples and local communities in 64 tropical countries. One of the main findings of the research is that indigenous peoples are […]