This image is the cover for the book Ground Truth

Ground Truth

“Expertly crafted and enjoyable . . . transforms the complicated topics of phenology and climate change. . . . accessible, tangible, and actionable.” —Mark D. Schwartz, editor of Phenology: An Integrative Environmental Science

Before you read this book, grab a notebook, go outside, and find a nearby patch of nature. What do you see, hear, feel, and smell? Are there bugs, birds, squirrels, deer, lizards, frogs, or fish, and what are they doing? What plants are in the vicinity, and in what ways are they growing? What shape are the rocks, what texture is the dirt, and what color are the bodies of water? Everything you notice, write it all down.

We know that the Earth’s climate is changing, and that the magnitude of this change is colossal. At the same time, the world outside is still a natural world, and one we can experience on a granular level every day.

Featuring detailed guidance for keeping records of the plants, invertebrates, amphibians, birds, and mammals in your neighborhood, this book also ponders the value of everyday observations, probes the connections between seasons and climate change, and traces the history of phenology—the study and timing of natural events—and the uses to which it can be put.

An expansive yet accessible book, Ground Truth is a guide to paying attention instead of turning away, and to gathering facts from which a fuller understanding of the natural world can emerge.

“A unique DIY manual for becoming attuned to the rhythms of the natural world.” —James T. Costa, author of Darwin’s Backyard: How Small Experiments Led to a Big Theory

“A necessary book.” —Susan J. Tweit, author of Walking Nature Home: A Life’s Journey

Mark L. Hineline

Mark L. Hineline is instructor in history, philosophy, and sociology of science at Lyman Briggs College, Michigan State University.

The University of Chicago Press