phe·​nol·​o·​gy | \ fi-ˈnä-lə-jē How to pronounce phenology (audio) \

Definition of phenology

1 : a branch of science dealing with the relations between climate and periodic biological phenomena (such as bird migration or plant flowering)
2 : periodic biological phenomena that are correlated with climatic conditions

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Other Words from phenology

phenological \ ˌfē-​nə-​ˈlä-​ji-​kəl How to pronounce phenology (audio) \ adjective
phenologically \ ˌfē-​nə-​ˈlä-​ji-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce phenology (audio) \ adverb

Examples of phenology in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And although our survival no longer relies entirely on these cues, watching the seasons — a practice called phenology — inspires a deeper appreciation for the workings of nature and our impacts on it. Star Tribune, "These picture books for children (and kids at heart) can bring in the outdoors," 11 Mar. 2021 Botanists have long studied what governs the timing of tree’s cyclic processes, also called their phenology. Ula Chrobak, Popular Science, "Climate change is affecting fall foliage, but not in the way you think," 30 Nov. 2020 Rainfall anomalies in the southern Amazon basin associated with ENSO cycles are a possible proximate cue affecting phenology and clutch size. Paul Douglas, Star Tribune, "Shorts-Worthy Friday and a Fine Weekend as "Delta" Approaches Louisiana," 7 Oct. 2020 Keep a phenology journal: Track (and eventually connect) weather, insect, and bird populations, and flowering and fruiting dates in the garden. Sunset Magazine, "45 Things to Do in Your Garden Right Now," 3 Aug. 2020 From leaves changing color to flower buds opening on a daffodil, phenology simply means the study of observable phases in plant and animal life, called phenophases, and anyone can learn to do it. Marianne Willburn, Better Homes & Gardens, "Keeping a Garden Journal Is the Easiest Way to Become a Better Gardener," 20 May 2020 Keep planting trees' Lorentz studies the Ohio River ecosystem and said people can already expect to see fewer fish this season from warmer winters two to three years back as part of that balance of phenology. Erin Glynn,, "How this year's second-warmest winter will affect your backyard," 30 Mar. 2020 Because of its unique flowering phenology, hemp can potentially provide nutrition to bees during a period of floral scarcity. Kristen Rogers And David G. Allan, CNN, "If you want to save bumble bees, plant these flowers in your yard," 28 Jan. 2020 All are led by naturalists and each has a theme, such as the phenology of when things happen in the natural world, like when lakes freeze, animals come out of hibernation and buds erupt. Brian E. Clark, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin botanical gardens and arboretums are a tropical escape in winter," 27 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'phenology.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of phenology

circa 1884, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for phenology

phenomena + -logy

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Learn More about phenology

Time Traveler for phenology

Time Traveler

The first known use of phenology was circa 1884

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Statistics for phenology

Last Updated

31 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Phenology.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 May. 2021.

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