Image showing a 13-lined ground squirrel in a mountain meadow.
  USA-NPN Summer Newsletter

In This Issue
Good to hear from you...
Site-level Information
Allergy Watch
Cloned Dogwoods
Quick Links
Greetings!

Thank you for your participation in Nature's Notebook, the USA-NPN's phenology observation program.  Now is a good time to make your plant and animal observations and to submit online any data you collected earlier this year.

Our new training videos are now online, so you can refer to them, and the guidelines page if you have any difficulties. If you don't find what you're looking for, contact us!
Good to hear from you...

Student conducting phenology observations.We received over 300 responses to the surveys we sent out to our observers in the fall of last year. We're grateful for the feedback you've given us through the survey and our contact form. Our surveys showed that most of you participate in order to contribute to a valuable national effort and because you enjoy participating. We also saw that 95% of you plan to participate again next year, which is great, as our data become richer and more valuable the longer our observers participate.

We also identified several barriers to participation, including a confusing online registration process and the species you wanted to observe not being on our list. We've made numerous improvements to the new Nature's Notebook data entry interface, so log on and let us know if it's easier to navigate. We've also got a plan in the works to allow observations of many more species.
Site-level Information

An observer's site seen in google earthPhenology is all about the 'when' of plant and animal life cycle events but scientists also need good information on 'where' you are making your observations. To gather this information we've added a tabbed section at the bottom of the site registration page, where you can add general information about your site (for example how developed it is) and also information specific to observing plants (what direction does the slope face) and information specific to observing animals (are there bird feeders at your site). Take a look at your Edit Site page to add this information and to make any corrections to your address or location information.
Allergy Watch

Pollen cones on a juniper.The USA-NPN is collaborating with many partners on a new NASA project to predict the timing of human allergic reactions caused by juniper pollen. Researchers will integrate data from citizen scientist observers of juniper phenology, satellite images of tree green-up and data from health centers to model the dynamics of seasonal allergies. The project aims to better predict seasonal allergies in order to improve quality of life for allergy sufferers. You can get involved by observing any of the four species of juniper on our list. Find out more.
Seeking Observers for Flowering Dogwoods

İR.A. Howard @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database
Flowering dogwood
Through the USA-NPN's Cloned Plants Project (and its predecessors), citizen scientists have contributed thousands of observations of lilac and honeysuckle phenology over the past 50 years. These records have informed our understanding of how phenology responds to climate (see resulting publications).

Next spring, the program is expanding to include flowering dogwood clones (Cornus florida; 'Appalachian spring'). We are looking for observers in the southeastern United States who are interested in receiving a pair of cloned dogwoods to observe. To let us know you're interested, log in to www.usanpn.org, go to your account page, click the edit tab below your username and below that click "Requests for Lilacs & Dogwoods". Note that we can't guarantee that everyone who requests dogwoods will receive them.
We look forward to hearing from you and seeing your observations this season!

USA National Phenology Network National Coordinating Office