Assessing Species Vulnerability to Climate Change Using Phenology

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Environment & Natural Resources Trust Fund
U of MN
Recipient Type
Public College/University
Start Date
July 2014
End Date
June 2017
Counties Affected
Project Overview

There is a critical need to understand how our natural resources are already responding to climate change in order to develop tools for projecting natural resource responses into the future and to devise plans for actions that can be taken in reaction to observed and predicted changes. Phenology – the timing of seasonal biological events such as budburst, flowering, bird migration, and leaf coloring – provides a tested indicator of climate change response by plants and animals. A rich source of phenology datasets exists independently throughout the state, but these datasets are not compiled in a centralized manner. Furthermore, ongoing collection of phenology data is a cost efficient task that, done in an organized manner, can continue to provide valuable long-term evidence of climate change response. Researchers at the University of Minnesota are using this appropriation to compile and analyze historical phenology datasets and to establish a statewide network to collect future phenology data. This information will be helpful in identifying plant and animal species vulnerable to climate change and enhancing adaptive management strategies, such as for maintaining forest productivity, supporting plant pollination and reproduction, and supporting efforts to maintain the integrity of wildlife and fisheries populations.

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2014, Chp. 226, Sec. 2, Subd. 05e
Appropriation Language

$175,000 the second year is from the trust fund to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota to compile and use historical datasets to assess change over time in the ecology of Minnesota species, identify vulnerable species, and inform management strategies for climate change. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2017, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Other Funds Leveraged
Direct expenses
Number of full time equivalents funded
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on Work Plan under Project Details.

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on Work Plan under Project Details.

Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
U of MN
Street Address
1530 Cleveland Ave N
St. Paul
Zip Code
(612) 624-7249
Administered By
Administered by