Seasonal Change: Spring Comes Early

Global Warming - by Emily Prinzivalli & Alisha Brownawell

How are bees affected if spring comes early?

A bee that is coming along and gathering pollen from plants might end up with no pollen at all because some of the plants might have shifted earlier and the rest of the plants might not have shifted at all. 85% of the world’s plant species are pollinated by animals, mostly bees. And 75% of the world’s crop plant species are pollinated by animals, again mostly by bees. If bees and plants responded differently to climate change then, for example, bees could emerge in the spring before plants were flowering, in which case the bees would die because they wouldn't have anything to eat, or flowers would fail to reproduce without being pollinated.

What other parts of the ecosystem are affected by spring coming early?

Tundra ecosystem, such as caribou, arctic fox, and snowy owls. Other observed changes in the United States include expanding oak hickory forests, contracting maple- beech forests and disappearing spruce forests.