Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Lei Meng, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Kathleen M. Baker, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Adam J. Mathews, Ph.D.


Climate change, end of season, moisture, phenology, remote sensing, temperature

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Previous studies have identified that changes in plant phenology are most likely induced by climate variability. One such change is the end of season (EOS) for deciduous forests in the United States. In essence, the EOS represents the end of plant productivity for a given year; the phase in which plant dormancy is reached. However, our wealth of knowledge on plant phenology largely overlooks the phases that occur in autumn, especially the EOS, with many previous studies focusing on spring phenology. This study uses remote sensing MODIS aerial imagery data and historical meteorological data to analyze any relationships that may exist between EOS and environmental and meteorological variables in the Fred Russ State Forest and the Porcupine Mountain Wilderness State Park. As the EOS represents the conclusion of plant productivity, any trends of a decreased or increased growing season (earlier or later EOS) could have implications for carbon sink efficiency and should therefore be closely examined.