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NCPR Newsfacts: Local Climate Change Data

The following four graphs take data from North Country observations and support the case that worldwide climate changes are mirrored in the region.

Suggestions for keeping your own records of plants, animals, and the seasons in the North Country

Graph and download data from weather stations in the region: New England Integrated Sciences and Assessment.




It’s Phenology: Suggestions for keeping your own records of plants, animals, and the seasons in the North Country

  1. Personal observations of living organisms are more likely to be useful than weather observations, which are already being made with professional-grade equipment and techniques in several locations around the North Country. However, observations of first and last hard frost are potentially useful, as are records of lake freeze-up and ice-out.

  2. Choose native plants or animals that you know well, and stick with them for as many years as you can.

  3. Make your observations in the same locations every year, and describe those locations as precisely as possible in your notes.

  4. Be very specific about what you are observing; first time a green shoot pops out of the ground, first opening of flower or leaf buds, etc.

  5. Be sure to make your observations daily, so you don't miss the actual events in question; i.e. if you look at your red maples only sporadically, then the day that you first noticed them flowering might not be the day upon which they actually began flowering.

  6. Don't worry if you miss a year, or if you can only keep your records for a few years. If you have been careful with your observations, and if your records are complete and fully descriptive of your site, species, and phenomena, then other people can later pick up where you left off.

  7. Keep paper copies of your data as well as electronic copies, and store them in separate locations, so they don't get lost!