Phenology, or the timing of the annual cycles of plants and animals, is extremely sensitive to changes in climate. … For example, plants may bloom before butterflies emerge to pollinate them, or caterpillars may emerge before migratory birds arrive to feed them to their young.
Why is phenology important as an indicator of climate change?
Phenology is argued to be one of the most sensitive biological indicators of climate change. Phenological shifts are often detected long before irreversible ecosystem responses are apparent. … This has enabled scientists to compare between study sites, species and different phenological events.
What is phenology and why is it important?
Phenology is nature’s calendar—when cherry trees bloom, when a robin builds its nest and when leaves turn color in the fall. Phenology is a key component of life on earth. … Phenology influences the abundance and distribution of organisms, ecosystem services, food webs, and global cycles of water and carbon.
What does the study of phenology show us about climate change?
Phenology is generally described as observation of the life-cycle phases of plants and animals and their relationship with the environment, especially climate. It involves investigation of the response of living organisms to seasonal and climatic changes in the environment in which they live.
Why is the study of phenology important?
Because phenological events are so sensitive to climate change, phenology has become a leading indicator that researchers can use to study and predict its impact. … These tools will make it easier for researchers to compare and contrast plant and animal responses to climate change over time and in different locations.
What can we learn from phenology observations?
Phenology data help us predict threats to people and the environment such as wildfires, drought or flooding. They help us decide the timing of events, from when to harvest or irrigate land to when to conduct controlled burns in forests.
What is an example of phenology?
Examples include the date of emergence of leaves and flowers, the first flight of butterflies, the first appearance of migratory birds, the date of leaf colouring and fall in deciduous trees, the dates of egg-laying of birds and amphibia, or the timing of the developmental cycles of temperate-zone honey bee colonies.
What happens if phenology changes?
If the phenology of a species is shifting at a different rate from that of the species that make-up its ecological conditions, this will lead to mistiming of its seasonal activities (Visser et al. 2004) or, to use an alternative terminology, to a mismatch in phenology (Stenseth & Mysterud 2002).
What are the things that influence phenology?
Phenology cycles and deviations from entrained patterns may be influenced by the potentially interacting effects of radiation, rainfall, and temperature. Flowering and the flushing of new leaves should coincide with high insolation, to take advantage of high photosynthetic activity (Opler et al.
How does climate change affect phenology of trees?
Climate change alters the bioclimatic conditions during the growing period of trees directly, but also indirectly by causing shifts in spring and autumn leaf phenology that lead to changes in the timing and length of the growing period.
How does climate change affect plant phenology?
Immediate along with delayed climate effects suggest dual triggers in plant phenology. Climatic models accounted for more than 80% of variability in flowering and leaf unfolding dates, and in length of the growing season, but for lower proportions in fruiting and leaf falling.