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The tundra phenology database: More than two decades of tundra phenology responses to climate change

May 11, 2021

Observations of changes in phenology have provided some of the strongest signals of the effects of climate change on terrestrial ecosystems. The International Tundra Experiment (ITEX), initiated in the early 1990s, established a common protocol to measure plant phenology in tundra study areas across the globe. Today, this valuable collection of phenology measurements depicts the responses of plants at the colder extremes of our planet to experimental and ambient changes in temperature over the past decades. The database contains 150 434 phenology observations of 278 plant species taken at 28 study areas for periods of 1–26 years. Here we describe the full data set to increase the visibility and use of these data in global analyses and to invite phenology data contributions from underrepresented tundra locations. Portions of this tundra phenology database have been used in three recent syntheses, some data sets are expanded, others are from entirely new study areas, and the entirety of these data are now available at the Polar Data Catalogue (

Publication Year 2022
Title The tundra phenology database: More than two decades of tundra phenology responses to climate change
DOI 10.1139/as-2020-0041
Authors Janet S. Prevéy, Sarah Claire Elmendorf, Anne Bjorkman, J. M. Alatalo, Isabel Ashton, Jakob J. Assmann, Robert G Björk, Mats P. Björkman, Nicoletta Cannone, Michele Carbognani, Chelsea Chisholm, Karin Clark, Courtney G. Collins, Elisabeth J. Cooper, Bo Elberling, Esther R. Frei, Greg Henry, Robert D. Hollister, Toke Thomas Høye, Ingibjörg Svala Jónsdóttir, Jeffrey T. Kerby, Kari Klanderud, Christopher Kopp, Esther Lévesque, Marguerite Mauritz, Ulf Molau, Isla H. Myers-Smith, Susan M. Natali, Steven F. Oberbauer, Zoe Panchen, Alessandro Petraglia, Eric Post, Christian Rixen, Heidi Rodenhizer, Sabine B. Rumpf, Niels Martin Schmidt, Ted Schuur, Philipp R. Semenchuk, Jane Griffin Smith, Katharine Suding, Ørjan Totland, Tiffany G. Troxler, Henrik Wahren, Jeffrey M. Welker, Sonja Wipf, Yue Yang
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Arctic Science
Index ID 70229804
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Fort Collins Science Center