August 11th, 2013 7:04 PM
UMaine researchers incorporate “chemical phenology” into their studies of the effects of climate change on forest ecosystems.
In this interview, Ivan J. Fernandez, Professor of Soil Science, School of Forest Resources and Climate Change Institute, discusses research in which he and graduate student Erin Redding set out to discover if the chemical composition of forest foliage could be used to monitor climate change effects on nutrient cycling in forest, a concept dubbed “chemical phenology”.
Fernandez has spent nearly 30 years studying the response of ecosystems to perturbations, or abrupt changes that set a system out of equilibrium. He has been involved with the Bear Brook Watershed project since the late 1980’s when experiments conducted there helped guide policy decisions related to the reauthorization of the Clean Air Act of 1990.
Learn more about Fernandez’s chemical phenology research.
August 10th, 2013 6:21 PM
Wondering why this year’s milkweed shoots are coming out in different places than last year’s? Uncertain which forsythia buds are flowers versus leaves? Is there a difference? Lois Stack helps answer typical questions Signs of the Seasons volunteers may have when setting out to observe plants in spring. Lois is a professor of sustainable agriculture at UMaine and a Cooperative Extension specialist in ornamental horticulture. For years, she offered viewers gardening tips on the WABI-TV’s “Weekend Gardener” program and also wrote a regular horticulture column for the Kennebec Journal. See Lois’ spring observation tips.
August 9th, 2013 10:54 AM
Dr. Abe Miller-Rushing, Science Coordinator for Acadia National Park and Schoodic Education and Research Center, is a phenologist studying the biological impacts of climate change and the role of citizen science in observing changes over time. Abe is the former Assistant Director, and one of the founding scientists, for the USA-National Phenology Network, which houses the data collected by Signs of the Seasons volunteers. In the interview below, he discusses his position at Acadia, his research on Henry David Thoreau and the value of citizen science projects. Read the interview.