What is phenology? Farmers and gardeners have been doing phenology for years and might not even know it. You too probably practice phenology without being aware of what you are doing. So what is it? Phenology is simply the study and observations of the natural world around you. When you notice the first tinge of orange on autumn leaves or the first buds and flowers of spring peeking up through the brown, that is phenology.
Anyone who has participated in fieldwork has learned the valuable lesson: expect the unexpected. Even when you’ve prepared for every “what if” scenario, something will inevitably happen where you need to think quickly on your feet; whether that is pushing a boat across a mudflat to chase the outgoing tide, saving a boat from sinking using the shirts off your back, showing up to your first day of fieldwork with everything but a writing utensil, or finding make-shift tools in the field.
Many people recognize the firey hue glasswort brings to a salt marsh as it turns red in the fall. Even from a distance, those with a discerning eye can pick out the bands of low marsh that fringe the water’s edge. Real connoisseurs of drive-by marsh plant identification can even pick out the dusty grey-green of spike grass (Distichlis spicata) interwoven with the backdrop of salt marsh hay (Spartina patens), but why do these plants grow in the places they do?
After nearly a year of planning, consultations and proposal writing, GBNERR staff are helping launch the Great Bay Eelgrass Resilience Project. This is the first update about the Great Bay Eelgrass Resilience Project. Periodic updates like this one will help keep communities around Great Bay and others informed and engaged and provide a preview of results as they begin to emerge. Read more to learn about this exciting project!
Have you always wanted to work for a National Estuarine Research Reserve? Well, we’re hiring! We are looking for a part time Maintenance Mechanic.
This time of year is fantastic for discovering what might be wandering around your yard when you aren’t looking.