WASHINGTON, UNITED STATES/ The
northern part of the planet enters into a new season. For many, fall is a
perfect time for taking a walk or a drive to see the beautiful leaves changing
colors from green to red, orange and yellow.
changing climate is affecting the timing of when leaves emerge, the amount of
foliage that grows as well as the timeframe when leaves begin to fall.
Pointing the forests
A new study released by the United States Geological System, USGS, shows the “phenology”, which is the timing of events related to climate change. Also, looks how climate change impacts is combined with other disturbances such as tree defoliation by insects and death by disease or fire.
Understanding phenology let know the availability of habitats and the flows of water that are critical to animals and people. The research will help inform decisions to responsibly manage land and water resources in response to any future changes in climate and the associated impacts.
The team of American scientists is focusing on the forests of the Shenandoah National Park in the Blue Ridge in the State of Virginia, in the East Coast of the United States. The forest of this part of the country have been protected for years from major land-use change, and the National Park Service has recorded the dates and often the location of disturbances such as fires and insect infestations.
The data registered by the Park Services’ make the park an excellent "laboratory" in which to conduct phenology research. Scientists are using satellite imagery to track and observe the forest and study the relation between seasonal forest change and weather.
Everyone interested can become involved in climate change research, observing that present events are far from being a matter of scientists. For example, you can record when plants first leaf out and bloom each year.
For those living in the United States, all can be done through the USA National Phenology Network, which was established by the USGS in collaboration with the National Science Foundation. Right now, citizens across the nation are providing data on plants and animals.