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European birch pollen – still holding back

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Low temperatures across Europe mean birch pollen season starts later than usual

There are currently very low levels of birch pollen in most of Europe, with the exception of the Balkans, see the figure below. The current birch pollen levels are currently at a level that we normally see in early March.

Birch pollen Europe 19 March 2020
Birch pollen Europe 19 March 2020

Moving forward, the next ten days are expected to be colder than normal for most of Europe. In France and Southern Germany, where we normally would see fairly high birch pollen concentration by now, the weather is expected to be colder than normal. For Norway, Northern UK and Ireland, temperatures are lower than normal and will probably mean that the real onset of the birch pollen season will not take place before the end of the month.

On the other hand, Baltikum, Finland, Southern Sweden and Denmark will be warmer than normal. See the map below for forecasted temperature deviations from the normal.

Difference between average temperatures and forecast for next ten days (19-29 March 2020). Blue and green colour mean it will be colder than normal, yellow and red mean it will be warmer.

Based on the forecasted temperatures, we do not expect that the birch pollen season in Europe will start in earnest during the next ten days.

However, Southern France (a region that is normally an early starter in Europe), Denmark and Southern Sweden might see the start of the birch pollen season during the next ten days. The birch pollen levels ten days from today are likely to be as illustrated in the figure below.

Birch pollen levels forecasted for March 28 2020.
Birch pollen levels forecasted for March 28 2020.

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You may also be interested in our other stories on pollen in Europe. Our video showing the average development of birch pollen really tells us that the birch in 2020 really is on to a slow start.

Credits: Maps and figures created with contributions from Rasmus Moldstad Bakken.

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