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Thread: Climate change changing when seasons start?

  1. #1 Climate change changing when seasons start? 
    nao
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    Is it possible for climate change to be slowly changing when seasons start? Over a period of time could we be living in summer but the climate actually feels like autumn?


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    Seasons are determined by the tilt of earth's axis in relation to the solar plane, an effect unrelated to the atmospheric conditions on the planet.


    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    True KALSTER, but temperature wise, there is an effect. It is getting warmer faster in the spring and staying warmer later into autumn. Winter ice is melting sooner, anf plants are blooming earlier in the spring. So much so that in some cases migrating animals are arriving too late. This is particularly pronounced in the northern hemisphere; the further away from an oceanic influence, the faster the changes.
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    The problem with these changes is that coincidences that have worked perfectly well under the regular seasonal changes can fall apart when the timing of temperature and/or precipitation changes.

    Animals, birds, insects and plants that pupate, bud, emerge, release or migrate based on day-length signals can find themselves with little or nothing to support them if their normal prey or pollinator or food source emerges or is most available depending on temperature or moisture signals. Which no longer line up usefully. And vice versa.

    (That's not even starting to take into account the devastation of early warmth promoting early bloom/ emergence followed by a spell of "normal" frosty weather. Knocks off quite a few insects or fruits. Watch out for the prices of apples and cherries in Canada and the USA this year.)
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    Quote Originally Posted by MeteorWayne View Post
    True KALSTER, but temperature wise, there is an effect. It is getting warmer faster in the spring and staying warmer later into autumn. Winter ice is melting sooner, anf plants are blooming earlier in the spring. So much so that in some cases migrating animals are arriving too late. This is particularly pronounced in the northern hemisphere; the further away from an oceanic influence, the faster the changes.
    I.e. general temperatures rise. I do understand though that an increase in global atmospheric energy does not necessarily mean that a certain area will get hotter. Certain regions might in fact cool a bit, depending on the changes in other locations and their effects on glaciation, vegetation, ocean and air currents, etc.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
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    Nao, The calender timing of seasons is an arbitrary division of a year into 4 equal parts - but I seem to recall that other timings have existed and some cultures have used other divisions, including ones that have direct connection to biological phenomena. In tropical Australia the locals tend to use an informal 2 season division - The Wet season and The Dry season.

    The underlying cyclic variation due to orbital tilt of the planet is quite predictable but the response of living things to the changes in day length, temperatures and seasonal weather is variable; that relationship between plants and animals and seasonal changes is called Phenology. Orchardists for example are probably very attuned to timing of bud emergence, flowering and fruit set and have kept good records of these for a long time. When it gets on average warmer earlier in Spring or stays warm for longer during Autumn - as has been happening due to climate change - the timing of annual phenomena like first flowering, leaf fall, animal mating seasons and migrations can and do change. Phenological records are one of the indicators used to show that climate change has been occurring.

    PS - I meant to say "the study of that relationship between plants and animals and seasonal changes is called Phenology."
    Last edited by Ken Fabos; July 27th, 2012 at 05:39 PM. Reason: added ps
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    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    for instance, there is now a viable tea plantation in Cornwall, the following article stating that "Since 1900 the average temperature in the UK has risen by about 1C. It may not seem like much but it has significantly lengthened growing seasons and allowed farmers to farm produce that are far more diverse than our historical staples of cereal and potatoes."

    whereas in the UK we haven't so far had much of a summer this year, it would appear that the conditions under which certain crops flourish have been enhanced
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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    Phenological records are one of the indicators used to show that climate change has been occurring.
    Yes. One of my all-time favourite climate records is the Japanese cherry blossom festivals. Hundreds of years worth of meticulously recorded natural events.

    http://arnoldia.arboretum.harvard.ed...icles/1893.pdf
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    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by nao View Post
    Is it possible for climate change to be slowly changing when seasons start? Over a period of time could we be living in summer but the climate actually feels like autumn?
    well...this is already happening now.
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