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Title: Testing Hopkins’ Bioclimatic Law with PhenoCam data
Premise of the Study

We investigated the spatial and temporal patterns of vegetation phenology with phenometrics derived from PhenoCam imagery. Specifically, we evaluated the Bioclimatic Law proposed by Hopkins, which relates phenological transitions to latitude, longitude, and elevation.


“Green‐up” and “green‐down” dates—representing the start and end of the annual cycles of vegetation activity—were estimated from measures of canopy greenness calculated from digital repeat photography. We used data from 65 deciduous broadleaf (DB) forest sites, 18 evergreen needleleaf (EN) forest sites, and 21 grassland (GR) sites.


DBgreen‐up dates were well correlated with mean annual temperature and varied along spatial gradients consistent with the Bioclimatic Law. Interannual variation inDBphenology was most strongly associated with temperature anomalies during a relatively narrow window of time.ENphenology was not well correlated with either climatic factors or spatial gradients, but similar toDBphenology, interannual variation was most closely associated with temperature anomalies. ForGRsites, mean annual precipitation explained most of the spatial variation in the duration of vegetation activity, whereas both temperature and precipitation anomalies explained interannual variation in phenology.


PhenoCam data provide an objective and consistent means by which spatial and temporal patterns in vegetation phenology can be investigated.

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Award ID(s):
1702697 1702627
Author(s) / Creator(s):
 ;  ;  ;  
Publisher / Repository:
Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons)
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Applications in Plant Sciences
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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