African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6859

Full Length Research Paper

Maize phenology as an indicator of climate change simulated by RegCM4 under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 in Mozambique

Telmo Cosme A. Sumila
  • Telmo Cosme A. Sumila
  • Federal University of Santa Maria/CCNE - Department of Physics, Av. Roraima, 1000 – 97105900 - Santa Maria, RS – Brazil. Scholarship holder, PEC-PG, CAPES/CNPq. National Institute of Meteorology- Department of Weather Analysis and Forecasting, Rua de Mukumbura, 164, Maputo – Mozambique.
  • Google Scholar
Simone E. T. Ferraz
  • Simone E. T. Ferraz
  • Federal University of Santa Maria/CCNE - Department of Physics, Av. Roraima, 1000 – 97105900 - Santa Maria, RS – Brazil
  • Google Scholar
Angelica Durigon
  • Angelica Durigon
  • Federal University of Santa Maria/CCR - Department of Phytotechnics, Av. Roraima, 1000 – 97105900 - Santa Maria, RS – Brazil.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 01 March 2023
  •  Accepted: 31 July 2023
  •  Published: 31 August 2023

Abstract

The IPCC fifth assessment report indicates an increase in air temperature under future scenarios over Mozambique. It may affect the development cycle and length of phenological stages of maize, and compromise the agricultural activity in Mozambique. The goal is to quantify the response of maize phenology to referred projected changes in climate, especially highlighting changes in air temperature patterns over Mozambique. Air temperature was simulated by a regional model, RegCM4, nested by global model HadGEM2 under two IPCC representative scenarios, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 for far future (2070-2099) relative to the baseline period (1971-2000). The Growing Degree-Days method (GDD) was used to calculate the thermal units accumulated throughout the growing season over the study domain, considering the development cycle of the main cultivars used in Mozambique. However, unlike the widespread increase in accumulated thermal units, there is a reduction in accumulated GDD during the maize growing season over some regions of the country. Over some regions of the country, there is a reduction in accumulated GDD during the maize growing season, unlike the widespread increase in accumulated thermal units. In addition to the flattening of favorable areas for maize growing, another immediate consequence of this reduction is the lengthening of the maize development cycle and possible loss of productivity.

Key words: Climate change, growing degree-days, maize phenology.