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  • Ways of Knowing: Traditional Knowledge as Key Insight for Addressing Environmental Change x
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Randy A. Peppler

following spring. Perhaps a very cold early winter that killed insect pests would have been considered a good winter. Maybe a winter with a lot of snow at opportune times would have been considered advantageous for capturing moisture. To help contextualize the Gros Ventre forecast, for example, beyond the observational indicators described in the response letter, it turns out that even during the earliest years of reservation life (late 1800s through early 1900s) pipe bundle rituals were held that

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Laurie Yung, Nicky Phear, Alayna DuPont, Jess Montag, and Daniel Murphy

continued to “hope for the best” (17, 23, 26, 29), expressing optimism that they might be “on the uphill swing moisture-wise” (29), that “it’s going to rain next spring,” (11) and “all it takes is some rain and some snow” (28). As this rancher described, “every time it just gets to the point of being so bleak that you’re about ready to cash it in, you get just enough rain to keep your hopes up” (19). For many ranchers, optimism about future moisture was a coping mechanism justified or framed by the

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Oluwatoyin Dare Kolawole, Moseki Ronald Motsholapheko, Barbara Ntombi Ngwenya, Olekae Thakadu, Gagoitseope Mmopelwa, and Donald Letsholo Kgathi

understanding of the variations in ecosystems and utilize their indigenous knowledge systems to develop traditional farming systems that are adaptable to their environment ( Dougill et al. 2010 ; Mogotsi et al. 2011 ). For example, flood recession farming households in the Okavango Delta plough their fields under rain-fed conditions or plough within shallow river channels where soil moisture is available from the relatively high water table ( Motsholapheko et al. 2012a ). This indeed partly buttresses the

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Daniel B. Ferguson, Anna Masayesva, Alison M. Meadow, and Michael A. Crimmins

culturally important plant species used for food, medicines, ceremonies, and crafts. Increased abundance of invasive plant species is also perceived to have come about since the beginning of the current drought. In particular, Russian thistle was repeatedly mentioned as a problem. As one HDNR manager told us, “the Russian thistle is getting bad and big—it’s like they are [absorbing] all our moisture.” Finally, both farmers and HDNR staff reported an increase in the number of wildlife trespass incidents

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Mathew Alexander Stiller-Reeve, David B. Stephenson, and Thomas Spengler

appropriate criterion, as the southerly winds advect moisture from the Bay of Bengal across Bangladesh. Ramage (1995) also defines the monsoon as the period when the winds are reversed compared with the winter months. As the winds are mainly from the north during the (boreal) winter, the southerly wind criterion seems justified ( Ahmed 1994 ; Ahmed and Karmakar 1993 ). At higher levels (200 hPa) we use a criterion that takes into account the formation of the easterly jet, associated with the meridional

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Mimi Stith, Alessandra Giannini, John del Corral, Susana Adamo, and Alex de Sherbinin

used annual averages in both NDVI and precipitation. In the case of NDVI, annual averages are constructed in two steps: from 16-day composites to monthly means, and from monthly means to 12-month (January–December) averages. In the case of precipitation, the data come in monthly time steps, which are averaged over the 12-month, January–December calendar year. Annual averages integrate the influence of rainfall on vegetation mediated by hydrology, that is, through varying soil moisture, runoff, and

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Karen Pennesi

studied, is reserved for the extreme situation in which very little rain fell over the season, with long periods (20 days or more) of dry days between the rainfall events. In this case, there is no harvest at all, and many people will not have even planted seeds if there was never sufficient soil moisture to justify an attempt. Seca includes both meteorological and agricultural droughts and often means socioeconomic drought as well, when households rely heavily on government or other external

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