'Wrong autumn' because of heat: Trees in the UK shed leaves early

Great Britain is hit by a particularly strong heat wave this year.

'Wrong autumn' because of heat: Trees in the UK shed leaves early

Great Britain is hit by a particularly strong heat wave this year. This has an effect on the trees: they are already shedding their leaves and thus heralding a "false autumn". This in turn could have consequences for wildlife.

Brown foliage instead of bright green plants: In the UK, some trees have already shed their leaves. "Because of the heatwave we are experiencing a 'false autumn'," London's Horniman Museum wrote on Twitter.

Early leaf fall is a sign of stress. The trees try to store moisture. "They release the hormones they use in the fall to retreat and survive," said Rosie Walker of the environmental organization Woodland Trust. According to experts, younger trees are more at risk than older plants with deep roots.

Britain is experiencing a particularly hot summer this year. Temperatures rose to over 40 degrees for the first time in July. It was the driest month on record in many regions in southern and eastern England. In the middle of the month, the government declared a state of emergency due to drought in large parts of England.

The "false autumn" could also affect some animal species. As Woodland Trust explained, fruit ripens earlier, which could result in some animals not being able to find enough food in the autumn.

"The climate crisis is bringing about seasonal weather patterns that nature is not adapted to," said Steve Hussey of the Devon Wildlife Trust. "Our long, hot summer and 'false fall' will affect many species into the true fall months and beyond."

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