Biometeorology: Weather and Health

Biometeorology is the study of the impact weather has on the natural world, including animals, plants and humans. This includes the impact on symptoms of existing diseases, contribution to new conditions and temporary physiological changes. There are a number of illnesses and symptoms that are caused or exacerbated by certain types of weather. Here we discuss some of the more obvious conditions, as well as some, perhaps, more surprising ailments.

British hay fever maps

Hay fever maps have been produced to help sufferers identify ‘hotspots’ that should be avoided. The map locates plants that can trigger hay fever or asthma attacks across Britain. It is hoped the map will help sufferers make decisions about where to live, work or visit at certain times, by also identifying the peak times when pollen is released. The researchers from University of Exeter, the Met Office and NERC’s Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, examined 12 key plant species that are associated with hay fever and asthma and mapped the data across Britain.