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Article

Rethinking tropical phenology: insights from long‐term monitoring and novel analytical methods

Citation
Morellato LPC, Abernethy K & Mendoza I (2018) Rethinking tropical phenology: insights from long‐term monitoring and novel analytical methods. Biotropica, 50 (3), pp. 371-373. https://doi.org/10.1111/btp.12562

Abstract
Here, we introduce the Special Section (SS) on long‐term monitoring and new analytical methods in tropical phenology. The SS puts together nine original papers plus a synthesis, bringing significant advances and new insights into our understanding of tropical phenology across Africa and tropical America. The papers address environmental cues, methodological shortcomings, and provide innovative analytical approaches, opening new pathways, perspective and applications of tropical phenology for forest management and environmental monitoring. The SS is a substantial step toward a more comprehensive overview of trends in tropical phenology, as seven of nine studies evaluate >10‐yr data sets applying new methods of analysis such as hierarchical Bayesian models, generalized additive models, and Fourier analysis. We argue that it is essential to maintain ongoing monitoring programs and build a tropical phenology network at least for long‐term (>10 yr) study sites, providing the means for national and international financial support. Cross‐continental comparisons are now a primary goal, as we work toward a global vision of trends and shifts in tropical phenology in the Anthropocene.

Keywords
America tropical, climate change, cross‐continental comparison, flowering, fruiting, leafing, savanna, tropical long‐term patterns, tropical Africa

Journal
Biotropica: Volume 50, Issue 3

StatusPublished
Author(s)Morellato, Leonor Patricia Cerdeira; Abernethy, Katharine; Mendoza, Irene
FundersInstitute of Tropical Ecology Research in Gabon
Publication date31/05/2018
Publication date online16/05/2018
Date accepted by journal28/03/2018
URLhttp://hdl.handle.net/1893/27324
ISSN0006-3606
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