Phenology is the study of seasonal biological phenomena like bird migrations and the timing of flowering.
ince 2010, CCHS students have collected data on 10 – 30 trees on campus. Students carefully observe the timing of leaf fall and bud burst (or leaf out) in the spring. This data documents one example of phenology. This data is submitted to the Harvard Forest tree phenology database associated with the university’s Long-Term Schoolyard Ecology Project
The work of CCHS students builds on observations made by Thoreau in the mid-1800s. Current scientists at Boston University, Harvard University, and other institutions have used Thoreau’s record to determine how global warming is affecting plants and animals in New England. The tree data collected by CCHS adds to this important historical record and allows us to see how our local ecology is affected by global warming.