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Eastern Geographic Science Center



Dr. John W. Jones
Research Geographer


   Reston PhenoCam

Images like those shown on this page are used in landscape phenology research. The Reston PhenoCam is one of two operated by the USGS in Virginia (follow this link for the other camera in the Shenandoah National Park). These cameras are used in the development of satellite-based vegetation monitoring methods. The images of the ground, shrub, and forest canopy conditions (for example, presence and absence of leaves and leaf color), are compared with vegetation measurements made from satellite imagery (right-top). Hemispherical photographs of the canopy (right-bottom) taken periodically during field data collection are also analyzed and compared against PhenoCam and satellite image data. PhenoCam images also record the timing of other biological events, such as bud formation and burst that, while not detectable by satellites, provide an image archive of use to biologists conducting phenology research. The ultimate goal is to uncover and understand potential impacts of climate change on eastern forest vegetation, hydrology, and habitats.

PhenoCam-We apologize for any inconveniences while
the Reston PhenoCam is temporarily inaccessible. We
anticipate that it will be back up by September 8, 2014,
or possibly later.

Reston PhenoCam
The Webcam is updated every 30 minutes 10am to 4:30pm. Larger view...

Animations Showing PhenoCam Views

Once the camera has been operated for a sufficient period, animations that show spring and fall phenology will be posted here (check back often!). Examples from the Shenandoah PhenoCam are currently provided:

bullet   Fall of 2011 at Pinnacles Research Area looking North (animated gif file - approx. 13 MB)

bullet   Fall of 2010 at Pinnacles Research Area looking North (animated gif file - approx. 8 MB)

bullet   Winter, Spring, and Summer of 2009 at Stony Man Mountain, looking north west (Windows Media Video file - approx. 2 MB)

bullet  Fall of 2008 at Stony Man Mountain, looking NW (slide show)

fisheye photo bullet   Phenology Home


Satellite Image
A August 12, 2012, Landsat image accessed via
GLOVIS.  Larger View...

Canopy View

Photo taken from the ground in the Reston, Virginia area.
March 7, April 25, and October 23, 2012:
Periodic photographs are taken from
beneath the canopy in Reston, Virginia,
using a skyward-facing, fish-eye lens that
can be used to measure when leaves
come out and how much tree cover exists
at specific locations. Larger view...


Funding for installation of the Reston PhenoCam was provided by the USA National Phenology Network. Funding for the PhenoCam's operation and the landscape phenology research it supports is provided by the Geographic Analysis and Monitoring and the Land Remote Sensing Programs of the USGS. The Project gratefully acknowledge the members of the "PhenoCam installation team": Brad Spiers, Terry Real, Ami Rahav and Cindy Cunningham.

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Page Last Modified: Monday, 09-Mar-2015 17:54:19 EDT