I'm happy to share with you the exciting news that our gridded phenology maps are now available for you to explore and use! We have two suites of products based on Accumulated Growing Degree Days (AGDD) and the Extended Spring Indices (SI-x). These maps can be accessed on the USA-NPN visualization tool as well as via the USA-NPN Geoserver.  

You can use these maps to see how the Accumulated Growing Degree Days for this year match up to a long-term average, and to compare the predicted onset of spring for this year to other years. In addition, you can map observations from Nature's Notebook against these predictions.  These products have a broad variety of applications, including assessing frost and pest risk for agricultural species, and integration with other data sources, such as remote imagery. 

Please try out these new products and let us know your thoughts and feedback!  We would love to hear how they might be of use to you in your research, management, and outreach programs. 

What's new at the USA National Phenology Network
Phenology model workshop

In March we held a workshop to discuss the state of the field of phenological model development, and map out a framework to develop and test predictive models going forward.  

Thank you to all our wonderful participants!  Stay tuned for a report detailing the outcomes of the workshop. 
Data and data products
Gridded phenology maps now available

Visit the USA-NPN visualization tool to explore two new suites of phenology map products:  Accumulated Growing Degree Days (AGDD) and Extended Spring Indices (SI-x).  Available maps include:
  • Contemporary (daily, current year) and 6-day forecast maps of Accumulated Growing Degree Days (AGDD)
  • Daily anomaly maps of AGDD, generated by comparing current day maps to 30-year (1981-2010) averages
  • Daily 30-year (1981-2010) average temperature accumulations
  • Daily Tmin and Tmax values for the current year
  • Current day and 6-day forecast maps of Spring Index First Leaf and First Bloom, updated nightly
  • Current year anomaly maps of First Leaf and First Bloom, generated by comparing current year maps to 30-year (1981-2010) averages
  • First Leaf and First Bloom for each year, 1981-2015
  • 30-year (1981-2010) average maps for First Leaf and First Bloom dates
Raster (GIS) data files can  be accessed via the USA-NPN Geoserver (online spatial data map server). Learn more about the data layers available and how to access the USA-NPN Geoserver on the Accumulated Growing Degree Day Products and Extended Spring Indices pages.

Quality assurance and quality control 

Interested in using the USA-NPN in-situ observations of plant and animal phenology but wish for more information on the quality of the data? We have recently updated our Data Quality Assurance and Quality Control Info Sheet to reflect our activities and measures to ensure that the data we collect and deliver is of the highest quality. The appendices of this report include measures of the temporal precision (how precisely observers are capturing phenophase onset and end estimates each year).  

NASA proposal opportunity: Citizen Science for Earth Sciences Program

The primary goal of the Citizen Science for Earth Systems Program is to develop and implement capabilities to harness voluntary contributions from members of the general public to advance understanding of the Earth as a system. The program aims to advance the use of citizen science in scientific research about the Earth by directly supporting citizen science activities, as well as by developing technology to further citizen science research.
Notices of Intent (NOIs) are requested by May 27, 2016, and proposals are due by July 21, 2016

USGS Postdoctoral position

A research opportunity is available at the USGS Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center on the Montana State University campus for a passionate postdoctoral researcher interested in patterns of species vulnerability and resilience to contemporary climate change, as they relate to adaptive capacity.
The successful candidate will be hired as a GS-11 Biologist after a nation-wide announcement on USAJOBS, and will be eligible for a benefits package. 

Upcoming meetings  
  • Ecological Society of America. Fort Lauderdale, Florida. August 7-12, 2016. A special evening session will be dedicated to phenology. Join us to learn more about data products and resources and discuss the future of the field! 
Research spotlight
Leaf emergence in California under current and future climate

In a recent paper in the International Journal of Biometeorology, Medvigy and colleagues used USA-NPN in situ data, collected in part by the California Phenology Project, to examine the extent to which different spatial resolution of climate change projections influences predictions of phenological activity of Valley oak. 

NEON plant phenology monitoring design

Our colleagues at the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON)published the NEON phenological monitoring design for an upcoming special issue of Ecosphere. This article describes how NEON will collect in-situ phenology records at each of its sites. By collocating plant phenology observations with a suite of additional meteorological, biophysical, and ecological measurements the NEON design will enable continental-scale inference about the status, trends, causes, and ecological consequences of phenological change. 


Kathy Gerst
Associate Research Scientist
Data Product Coordinator