Guest post by Steven Goddard
Photo Credit : BBC News
Last April, I wrote an article titled Global Warming and “The Early Spring” which highlighted one of the favorite AGW myths, that CO2 is making winter warmer and spring arrive earlier. Here is the 2010 UK update.
In 2005, the BBC wrote this article :
Wildlife winces at early spring. A survey involving 65,000 wildlife sightings suggests that frogs and bumblebees are among the hardest hit. “Climate change is not something that is happening a million miles away – it is going on in our own back gardens,” said nature presenter Bill Oddie.
Here is one from Global Change Biology :
Early spring in Europe matches recent climate warming August 25, 2006 Conclusive proof that spring is arriving earlier across Europe than it did 30 years ago is published today in the journal Global Change Biology.
Real Climate wrote about it last year :
Breaking the silence about Spring. Early Spring has the potential to be immensely influential, a real turning point in the popular appreciation of climate change impacts among laypersons and scientists alike. Read it.
England – Earlier first flowering date. One of the most comprehensive studies of plant species in Britain revealed that the average first flowering date of 385 British plant species has advanced by 4.5 days during the past decade compared with the previous four decades: 16% of species flowered significantly earlier in the 1990s than previously, with an average advancement of 15 days in a decade. These data reveal the strongest biological signal yet of climatic change. Flowering is especially sensitive to the temperature in the previous month, and spring-flowering species are most responsive (Fitter and Fitter, 2002).
From The Daily Mail
Riot of colour: As spring comes earlier and earlier each year, such species as hawthorn and hornbeam will cut off more and more light to the bluebell which will cause it to decline disastrously
* So how is that warm winter/early spring theory doing in 2010?
From The Guardian
Severe winter delays bluebell season National Trust predicts three-week wait for nature’s blue carpets
Usually from about now they spring up in the far south-west then spread like a Mexican wave across Britain. But the National Trust says today that nature-lovers could have to wait until the end of the month before carpets of English bluebells begin to appear in woodlands. The charity believes that after the coldest winter for more than 30 years the English bluebell season is likely to be up to three weeks late. The plants depend on warm ground temperatures and the prolonged frosts will have impacted upon their ability to grow.
From The Guardian
Small is fatal for our songbirds in Britain’s great winter freeze. A survey by the public in Britain’s gardens reveals the toll on wildlife caused by weeks of Arctic conditions
Few people may have been wanting more evidence of the ferocity of recent weather. Nevertheless they got one from an unexpected source last week: the Big Garden Birdwatch. Organised by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), it involved members of the public reporting bird sightings in their gardens over the last weekend in January. More than half a million responses were received and a count showed precisely how this year’s winter – the coldest in 30 years – has taken a toll of the nation’s small songbirds, such as the goldcrest and the coal tit.
From The Guardian
Spring about to ‘explode’ in Britain, conservationists say Experts believe release of pent-up energy after such a long, hard winter could produce the most spectacular spring in years
From The BBC
Why is it going to be a stunning spring? I’s been the longest and coldest winter in years, but the pay-off will be a spectacular spring, conservationists say
Conclusion : An early spring is climate, but apparently a late spring is just weather. When can we expect retractions from The Guardian, BBC and Real Climate?