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LPPs with Impact Statements

Here you will find our list of Local Phenology Projects using Nature's Notebook who have provided us with their LPP's Impact Statement. If a group listed has a blank entry or is missing information, they have not updated their information with our staff in 2019.

Two phenology efforts are ongoing at the Arnold, including the Native and Indicator Observation Program and the Tree Spotters program.

Boston
MA
Partner Website:
  • 2017 Impact Statement

    Lizzie Wolkovich, Assistant Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, launched the Arnold Arboretum Tree Spotters program pilot in 2015. Her research explores how climate and community assembly may explain and forecast plant phenology, which is strongly linked to climate and can be easily observed. Lizzie is interested in engaging citizen scientists to collect phenology data to support her research.

    From 3/25/15 – 3/26/17: Trained 238 volunteers to make/record observations in Nature’s Notebook (68,651 observations to date); offered 33 training classes (28 for new Tree Spotters and 5 refresher classes for returning volunteers), 22 opportunities for volunteers to meet with researchers on the grounds, and 6 educational sessions (also open to the public); held 3 social events. Staff: research assistants/graduate students/interns and a volunteer.

    Forty-three volunteers have participated actively in the program (making multiple observations and/or collaborating on special projects). We have also engaged the general public via our educational sessions. We have an active social media presence (Facebook, Flickr, Twitter), a monthly eNewsletter, a website, and a volunteer database. As a result of the success of this pilot, the Arboretum is now looking for funding to ensure that the program will continue.

Two phenology efforts are ongoing at the Arnold, including the Native and Indicator Observation Program and the Tree Spotters program.

Boston
MA
Partner Website:
  • 2017 Impact Statement

    Lizzie Wolkovich, Assistant Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, launched the Arnold Arboretum Tree Spotters program pilot in 2015. Her research explores how climate and community assembly may explain and forecast plant phenology, which is strongly linked to climate and can be easily observed. Lizzie is interested in engaging citizen scientists to collect phenology data to support her research.

    From 3/25/15 – 3/26/17: Trained 238 volunteers to make/record observations in Nature’s Notebook (68,651 observations to date); offered 33 training classes (28 for new Tree Spotters and 5 refresher classes for returning volunteers), 22 opportunities for volunteers to meet with researchers on the grounds, and 6 educational sessions (also open to the public); held 3 social events. Staff: research assistants/graduate students/interns and a volunteer.

    Forty-three volunteers have participated actively in the program (making multiple observations and/or collaborating on special projects). We have also engaged the general public via our educational sessions. We have an active social media presence (Facebook, Flickr, Twitter), a monthly eNewsletter, a website, and a volunteer database. As a result of the success of this pilot, the Arboretum is now looking for funding to ensure that the program will continue.

Audubon California is compoased of the following National Audubon Organizations:

Audubon Starr Ranch, Madrone Audubon, Mt. Diablo Audubon Society, Napa Solano Audubon, Sea and Sage Audubon, Tulare Audubon, Yolo Audubon

 

CA
  • 2018 Impact Statement

    We have trained volunteers to monitor phenophases of selected bird, butterfly, and plant species since April 2014. The volunteers work in pairs and come out monthly to observe in the coastal sage scrub (a rare shrubland) or riparian. We use the data visualization tool regularly to help our seed collector shift her collection timing. With rising temperatures, long unusual cold spells, drought it is of great interest how our species are responding and the data viz tool helps us see patterns that are changing or stable. We sometimes have our young seasonal staff use the data viz tool to make graphs and they become familiar with phenology and what we can learn from our data.

    We wanted to do something that had a scientific basis to understand the possible effects of the changing climate. Nature's Notebook is an excellent educational tool for both volunteers and staff.

    The changes we are experiencing in temperature and rainfall are frightening and extreme. Sometimes our phenology results just illustrate trends but sometimes there are actions we can take, particularly for our restoration project, i.e. shifting timing of seed collection for upland shrublands or native woody cuttings collection for riparian restoration.

     

Central Connecticut Phenology Program is using Nature's Notebook to become part of a national organization with protocols gives importance to a very important movement in creating a citizen scientist base who can gather the needed data to enable better environmental decisions moving forward.

East Hartford, Manchester and Tolland
CT
  • 2019 Impact Statement
    Nature's Notebook allows everyone the realization that science and ecological awareness can be fun. With some instruction, anyone can become a competent citizen scientist observer. o subtly make people aware that what happens in their own backyards has implications to what is happening in the rest of the world.
    I won't know the results of the implementation of my vision of my local phenology program for many months. I know where I would like to be at the end of 2020 and will develop a reasonable timeline to get there while meeting many of my high expectations.
    Since this is an entirely new local program, time will tell. I will be learning as much as I will be instructing. The first year my focus will be on education, others and my own, creating fun phenological events at specific phenophases, making cooperative relationships with local organizations, associations, schools, clubs and groups, setting up sites and trails while learning administrative methods and procedures that will make this program viable and sustainable.

Earthwise Aware (EwA) is a Nature conservation nonprofit in Massachusetts and the NPN addresses our standards for standardized scientific protocol rigor, global data, and open science. We focus on Biodiversity and how to protect it.

Concretely, we are dedicated/committed to bringing biodiversity knowledge, ecological ethics and environmental leadership at the core of communities and organizations / in the daily life of people.

One of our main outreach is through Co-creative Biodiversity & Climate citizen science programs to engage communities in helping, contributing to, collaborating in scientific endeavors.

Our citizen science principles are to:

  • Advance Biodiversity & Climate research
  • Give Science back to the people

Our Citizen Science pillars are:

  1. Species & ecosystems knowledge
  2. Ecological ethics
  3. Open and global science
  4. Democratization of science

We run several programs in Massachusetts. One of our programs happens at the Middlesex Fells Reservation (2800 acres of forested uplands and wetlands): ‘EwA at the Fells’. This is where we actively record via Nature’s notebook. We use other global platforms for other kinds of biodiversity recording. We collaborate with experts and scientists and study various habitats at different levels (species occurrence & abundance, phenology, plant community assessment, etc.). The intent is to build a continuous natural history of the place through habitat/species  surveillance/monitoring and phenology recording, and aligning as well with standards as developed by GEO BON (global biodiversity observation network). Our program at the Fells program engages its participants in observing birds, amphibians, insects, fungi, plants, etc. We also pay attention to the relationships between species and reflect on the meaning and implications of these relationships in relation to the forest, the cities around and further away. This intimate system-focused exploration helps to build a deep understanding of the place through rapid habitat-changing conditions and over time for the benefits of the Fells, its scientists, and ultimately our  communities.

There are several species that we are monitoring among which some rare or endangered species (and for which we record information for our local scientist connections).

With time and with a growing number of participants, we will increase the list of species we monitor.

Somerville, Medford, Winchester
MA
Partner Website:
  • 2018 Impact Statement

    Earthwise Aware (EwA) Biodiversity & Climate Citizen Science fills important biodiversity and phenology data gaps. Our projects are about co-creative conservation using open and global science protocols and tools -protocols that lead to comparable and usable data, accessible and transparent to scientists and the public worldwide.

    For our phenology studies, we use Nature’s Notebook that we endorse for its rigor and openness. Specifically, we value the standardization effort of the protocol across the U.S., therefore, leading to outcomes that we -as well as anyone interested- can aggregate and compare with other institutions’ output. Scientific rigor and openness are critical to science, and this was a factor for adopting Nature’s Notebook.  

    Since we started in 2018, we recorded about 15,000 data points, which aggregated with about 20,000 biodiversity records, start to establish a continuous natural history of the urban wildlife sites that we are studying. Our 'system' approach is unique and an acknowledged differentiator. Our model is inclusive and democratic; it bridges expertises and domains; it truly values the skills of its citizen scientists and networks, and enables genuine Open Science. As a result, we are witnessing a rapid increase in knowledge, awareness, skills, and aspirations of our citizen scientists.

  • 2019 Impact Statement

    EwA Biodiversity & Climate Citizen Science fills important biodiversity and phenology data gaps. EwA science projects are about co-creative conservation using open and global science protocols and tools. We support studies for which data follow protocols that lead to comparable and usable data. Data access is open and transparent to scientists and the public worldwide. Our perspective goes far beyond using the public as a resource to gather data while potentially educating the public. It is inclusive and democratic; it bridges expertizes and domains; it truly values the skills of its citizen scientists and networks, and it enables genuine Open Science.

    As EwA Phenology is concerned, we use Nature’s Notebook protocol and platform that we endorse for its rigor and openness. Specifically, we approve of the standardization effort of the protocol across the U.S., therefore, leading to outcomes that we as well as anyone interested can aggregate and compare with other institutions’ output. Data rigor and openness are critical to science, and this was a definite factor for choosing to use Nature’s Notebook.

    EwA’s program is young. Yet since we started we recorded about 18,000 data points, which aggregated with about 20,000 biodiversity occurrence and abundance records start to give a sense of the continuous natural history of the sites that we are studying. Our system approach is unique and an appreciated differentiator in our region. We also are witnessing first hand the increase of knowledge, awareness, skills, and aspirations  (KASA) of our citizen scientists and volunteers. Our model based on science democratization and the accessibility of our program to all communities make a difference while serving science.

    Check out Earthwise Aware's Biodiversity and Phenology Report, or the Report Highlights.

Various
AL, LA, MS
  • 2018 Impact Statement

    The Gulf Coast Phenology Trail was established in 2017 to have citizen scientists observe and record phenophases in red maple, red bay, yaupon holly, and wax myrtle plants using the program, Nature's Notebook. Initially the four core plants were selected to learn if there is a east-west gradient in plants based on the seasons. The inventory of plants and animals were increased depending on the site.
    Sites selected for the Gulf Coast Phenology Trail included primarily federal lands along the Mississippi Gulf Coast and areas in southeastern Louisiana. Using an established monitoring program such as Nature's Notebook made it easy to implement with the assistance of staff and recruited citizen scientists. Networking with Master Naturalists, Master Gardners, or Habitat Stewards helped with the recruitment and training for volunteers who needed to provide pay-back hours. The pool of potential volunteers was enlarged to include students, interns, and the interested public. Networking, one-on-one recruitment, advertisements, social media were used to increase participation.
    Adding additional partners such as a community college and universities affiliated sites increased the "inventory" of core plants and the number of staff, students, and volunteer participants. Providing training classes for the interested public increased their knowledge of phenology and climate change. Students spent time out of the classroom to observe and work together in teams. Volunteers who regularly monitored "their" plants have learned about the life cycles and made connections that increased their knowledge of native plants. Anecdotally, participants stated that they look at plants with a new set of eyes and they look forward to changes or phenophases. Managers of sites wanted to know how they can share information about the program and have requested talks or written information.

Indiana Phenology Trail's Local Phenology Programs (LPP's) Holliday Park and Indiana Backyard Observers are jointly sponsoring our project using Nature's Notebook to develop a network of site across Indiana to gather baseline data on phenology timing in Indiana.

Various
IN
This LPP is working with students.
  • 2019 Impact Statement

    Plant phenology is a great indicator of environmental changes. Such data is not presently readily available in Indiana. Indiana Phenology works to fill that gap by engaging people of all ages in phenology observation using Nature's Notebook, a program developed by the USA National Phenology Network.

    The goal of our project is to document the leafing, flowering and fruiting of common native plants in all 92 Indiana counties. This data will help us measure the impact of environmental changes, including climate change, so that we can effectively respond and adapt. We hold workshops, create and share resources, provide training and educational opportunities, and share a monthly newsletter reporting observations from the past month.

    In 2019, our first year, 19 observers made 17,823 observations at 25 sites in 11 counties. Our observers monitored 89 different species including Eastern redbud, Tuliptree, Sugar maple, Bur oak and Canadian serviceberry. We are 12% of our way to our long-term goal of having observers in every county of Indiana.

Oregon Season Tracker is a Regional Phenology Network. Headed up by Jody Einerson, our project of Oregon State University aims to link natural resource managers, educators, researchers and others in the community to the science they use through collaborative citizen science. Oregon Season Tracker is working with researchers from OSU and HJ Andrews Experimental Foresty LTER to expand climate data and open channels of communication with the public across all of Oregon.

Statewide
OR
This LPP is working with students.
This LPP is working with under-served communities.
Partner Website:
  • 2019 Impact Statement

    Issue: Oregon Season Tracker (OST) aims to broaden discussion and understanding about climate science, linking natural resource managers, educators, researchers and others in the community to the science they use through collaborative citizen science. Volunteers contribute scientific data on precipitation and plant phenology at their home, woodland, farm, ranch or school for their own land management decisions and to share with research partners both locally and nationally.

    Action: In 2019 we continued to concentrate on 1.) Reaching out to partners within Extension from previously untapped counties to train volunteers. 2.) Concentrating on supporting/retaining our volunteers through continued education opportunities and communications.  3.) Continuing work with classrooms, offering teacher professional development, OST curriculum materials, and classroom support through 4-H.

    Outcome: By the end of 2019 the OST citizen scientists accounted for 189 unique registered rain gauge stations tracking precipitation with the OST program and the Community Collaborative Rain Hail & Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) national database. OST partners with the National Phenology Network (NPN) to track plant phenology observations through Nature’s Notebook.

    Volunteers associated with OST partner group are submitting data from their own home sites. In 2019 we also were able to reach out to Southwest Oregon with a training in collaboration with an Extension partner - training 14 new observers from that area.  In 2019 we also worked with HJ Andrews to secure a $5000. grant to support the program in schools.  This allowed us to bring the first group of 50 students to the forest to tour, meet the researcher, and go out in the field and share data collection.

    2019 For the first time we took 50 - 5th grade students to the Andrews forest to interact with the climate researchers.  We conducted a first continuing education phenology refresher class.  We conducted a training in Southwest Oregon to expand our reach.  We trained 46 new citizen scientist who accounted for 33 new observation sites.

    In 2019 the program received the 2018 PhenoChampion award from USA-NPN, we received OSUEA Search for Excellence award, and had the cover article in the Rural Connections; the magazine of the Western Rural Development Center Spring/Summer 2019 issue.

  • 2018 Impact Statement

    Issue: Oregon Season Tracker (OST) aims to broaden discussion and understanding about climate science, linking natural resource managers, educators, researchers and others in the community to the science they use through collaborative citizen science. Volunteers contribute scientific data on precipitation and plant phenology at their home, woodland, farm, ranch or school for their own land management decisions and to share with research partners both locally and nationally.

    Action: In 2018 we strategically concentrated 1.) Reaching out to partners within Extension from previously untapped counties to train volunteers. 2.) Concentrating on supporting/retaining our volunteers through continued education opportunities and communications. This included our first volunteer/researcher learning retreat at partner HJ Andrews Experimental Forest LTER 3.) Continuing work with classrooms, offering teacher professional development, OST curriculum materials, and classroom support through 4-H.

    Outcome: By the end of 2018 the OST citizen scientists accounted for 156 unique registered rain gauge stations tracking precipitation with the OST program and the Community Collaborative Rain Hail & Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) national database. OST partners with the National Phenology Network (NPN) to track plant phenology observations through Nature’s Notebook. Volunteers associated with OST partner group at Nature’s Notebook have contributed over 21, 000 phenology observation in 2018. OST Retreat evaluations showed a strong connection between researcher interactions and volunteers gaining better understanding climate science.

Pepperwood is an ecological institute dedicated to educating, engaging, and inspiring our community through habitat preservation, science-based conservation, leading-edge research, and interdisciplinary educational programs. As part of the California Phenology Project, citizen scientists at Pepperwood are collecting important phenological information that will be used to inform regional land management practices and conservation strategies under a changing climate.

Santa Rosa
CA
Partner Website:
  • 2017 Impact Statement

    Plant phenology is one of the most sensitive indicators of shifts in climate patterns. The importance of climate change has been highlighted by California's recent 4-year drought from 2012–2015. Climate models suggest that Northern California will become increasingly arid with an increased probability of extreme events such as drought and flooding (Flint and Flint 2012). Since 2013, citizen scientists at Pepperwood Preserve have been tracking the effects of climate on California native plant life cycles through the National Phenology Network and the California Phenology Project. Our volunteers monitor 11 species of woody shrubs and trees twice a week throughout the year. As of January 2017, we have collected over 65,000 plant phenology observations. This project provides an incredible opportunity for citizen scientist to build critical research skills, enhance their botanical knowledge and connection to plant life cycles, and gives them professional development experience analyzing data and sharing their findings at scientific conferences. Data collected by this project informs important research about how plant species are responding to climate and how these shifts may impact the local ecology.

The North Carolina Arboretum engages school groups and visitors in making phenology observations using Nature's Notebook, through its Project EXPLORE program.

Asheville
NC
This LPP is working with students.
  • 2017 Impact Statement

    Teachers have expressed a need for on-site field trips, eliminating travel time and costs, that address curriculum standards and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education. As an organization we would like to reach audiences not typically served by field trips by engaging with Title One schools and offer place-based educational programs. We offered a Project EXPLORE mini grant to teachers in western North Carolina through The NC Arboretum in Asheville, NC. We modeled for teachers and students how to collect data for Nature's Notebook in phenology plots we set up in their schoolyards and met with both students and teachers three times throughout the school year to focus on Nature's Notebook. The teachers and students collected data weekly from September to April and presented their findings at our mountain science expo. Since beginning the Project EXPLROE program in 2013, we have had 35 teachers in 28 schools and 2000 students throughout western North Carolina participate in Nature’s Notebook. Students have submitted 33,863 observations. Based on pre and post surveys we have successfully provided a way for teachers to be able to meet their curriculum while taking students outside and connected students with local nature, while they’ve contributed to the scientific community through Nature’s Notebook, and ultimately gained interests in science and science careers.

Undergraduate class at UC Santa Barbara and volunteers are making observations at the Garden. Part of the California Phenology Project.

Santa Barbara
CA
This LPP is working with students.
Partner Website:
  • 2017 Impact Statement

    It is important to promote education of the public concerning seasonal plant cycles, as well as plants’ sensitivities to climate, in order to demonstrate the critical importance of humans’ interconnection to our environment. Changes in plant phenomena affect abundance, diversity of species, interactions, ecological functions, effects on water, energy, and chemical elements. Recorded data can be used in research and management, informing decisions, as climate change affects earth’s ecosystems. The California Phenology Project was started in 2010 by Dr. Susan Mazer, by a grant from National Science Foundation, and in collaboration with National Park Service Climate Change Response Program, US Geological Survey, and USA-National Phenology Network. Utilizing National Phenology Network’s Nature’s Notebook, nineteen plant species and almost 1,300 individual plants on public and private lands have been monitored. Over sixty trainings with seven hundred participants, have been given, with more trainings occurring. As of March 15, 2017, 1,440,000 (1.44 million) phenological observations have been recorded. The group leader was trained as Citizen Scientist-Phenologist by Dr. Susan Mazer at Santa Barbara Botanic Garden two years ago. We currently study five plants, and have plans to add more. Four people have been trained to utilize Nature’s Notebook, and found it fulfilling to be able to share the process of plant phenophases with students. The significance of data collection and recording from plants, while enjoying the beauty of the plants themselves, makes phenology an extremely rewarding and worthwhile project.