Plants and Climate Change Focus of Talk

Director of the California Phenology Project, which tracks the seasonal activity of plants to better understand climate change, will give a free talk April 13 at UC Riverside

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (www.ucr.edu) — The director of the California Phenology Project, which tracks the seasonal activity of plants to better understand climate change, will give a free talk April 13 at the University of California, Riverside.

headshot of Susan Mazer

Susan Mazer will give the Jane Block Conservation Biology Lecture at UC Riverside on April 13.

Susan J. Mazer, who is also a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, will give the Jane Block Conservation Biology Lecture from 4:10 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Genomics Auditorium at UC Riverside.

Phenology is the study of the seasonal cycles of plants and animals, including the annual timing of budburst, flowering and seed dispersal. Monitoring this timing has become a reliable way of detecting the effects of climate change on the seasonal activity of individual plants, populations and species.

The California Phenology Project is the first statewide effort designed to assess the effects of climate change on the California flora by engaging the public in the monitoring of the phenological status of hundreds of plants in 34 species.

Established in 2010, the project is a collaboration among seven national parks, the Californian Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit, the University of California, Santa Barbara and the USA-National Phenology Network.

Chaparral, oak woodlands, and forests are represented by Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, Golden Gate National Recreation Area, John Muir National Historic Site and Redwood National and State Parks. Montane habitats are represented by Lassen Volcanic National Park and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Deserts are represented by Joshua Tree National Park.

The Jane Block Distinguished Lecture in Conservation Biology is named after a widely recognized community leader who has played a significant role in saving lands in Riverside County, getting habitat conservation plans established, and supporting the Center for Conservation Biology at UC Riverside.

Block is past president of the Riverside Land Conservancy, a nonprofit land trust that facilitates the transfer of land from willing private landowners to public ownership. In 1973, she led opposition to the development of Box Springs Canyon, an effort that resulted in the establishment of the Box Springs Mountain Reserve. Block has also spearheaded the preservation of the Santa Rosa Plateau Preserve, the North San Jacinto Wildlife Area, Sycamore Canyon and San Timoteo Canyon.

At UC Riverside, she is a member of the board of directors of the Center for Sustainable Suburban Development. She and her husband, Richard, created the Jane Block Distinguished Lecture in Conservation Biology, the Jane Block Distinguished Lecture in Women’s Studies Endowed Fund and the Richard E. Block Distinguished Lecture in Mathematics.

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