06 Apr '18, 2pm

Spring is Arriving Earlier in National Parks

This spring, the cherry trees around the Tidal Basin, southwest of the National Mall in Washington, D.C., are reaching peak bloom in early April 2018—timing that is in line with the 96-year average . After a warm February, cool March temperatures confounded models that had predicted the bloom to occur earlier than usual. That’s not surprising, as temperature plays a crucial role in bloom timing. But over the longer term, climate change is causing spring to begin earlier and earlier across the United States. These maps reveal just how much earlier spring is arriving in National Parks across the country. The data were published in 2016 by ecologists from the National Park Service, working in collaboration with colleagues at other agencies and institutions. The first map shows the rate of change (days per century since 1901) of “first leaf”—the date at which leaves first appe...

Full article: https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=91948&...

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