Using their backyards as laboratories, participants in the Signs of the Seasons program help scientists document the local effects of global climate change. Hundreds are trained to observe and record the phenology (seasonal changes) of common plants and animals living in their own communities — a citizen science project that fills a gap in regional climate research. Volunteers across Maine and now New Hampshire record the growth of milkweed, the nesting of robins, the development of rockweed and more. The goal is to build a rich, detailed record of the region’s seasonal turns, a resource too costly to build without a network of citizen volunteers. The collected data are made available to our collaborating scientists and resource managers.
University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Maine Sea Grant coordinate the Signs of the Seasons program in partnership with the USA National Phenology Network (USA-NPN), Acadia National Park, Schoodic Education and Research Center, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Maine Maritime Academy, Maine Audubon, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, and climate scientists and educators at the University of Maine. Rockweed monitoring in New Hampshire is co-sponsored by the Coastal Research Volunteers.
Click the links below to see event details for each training and sign-up.
Become a Signs of the Season Observer
Monday, March 20, 2017, 4:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. at Gilsland Farm Audubon Center in Falmouth, ME.
Monday, March 27, 2017, 4:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. at Fields Pond Audubon Center in Holden, ME.
Monday, April 3, 2017, 4:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. at the Hutchinson Center in Belfast, ME.
Wednesday, April 12, 2017, 4:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. at the UMaine Extension Hancock County Office in Ellsworth, ME.
Thursday, April 27, 2017, 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay, ME.
Rockweed Monitor Training (Coastal Signs of the Seasons)
Thursday, March 23, 2017, 1:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. at the Darling Marine Center in Walpole, ME.
Monday, April 3, 2017, 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. at the Gundalow Company in Portsmouth, NH.
Wednesday, April 5, 2017, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. at Kettle Cove in Cape Elizabeth, ME.