British Wildlife 28.4 April 2017

What was the effect of the warmest December on record? Topics from Nature’s Calendar/UK Phenology Network

In 2015, the UK experienced its warmest and wettest December since records began in 1910. The UK Phenology Network keeps track of a wide variety of seasonal events, from Frog emergence in spring to Beech leaf drop in autumn, in order to monitor changes and understand how such extreme weather affects British wildlife. Here, the Nature’s Calendar team report on what effect, if any, the abnormal December of 2015 had on wildlife activity.

The weather in December 2015 came as a bit of a shock. The UK Met Office listed the mean temperature of that month as 7.9°C; the warmest December in the UK temperature series starting in 1910, and 1.0°C warmer than the previous record December temperature, in 1934. An examination of the longer Central England Temperature series reveals it to have been the warmest December in the 357 years of that record, dating back to 1659.

Through a naturalist’s eyes Lost and found: the resurrection of an ‘extinct’ British plant
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