, Volume 116, Issue 2-3, pp 309-315

Distribution of airborne pollen and spores and their long distance transport

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The atmosphere near the ground contains a mixed population of pollen and spores in the 1 to 90 μm diameter range. Continuous sampling at Rothamsted Experimental Station at 2 m above ground level indicated concentrations averaging 12,000 m−3 over 5 summer months, but 1 million m−3 can occur for short periods. Concentrations change rapidly with locality, season, time of day or night and weather. Normally concentration in the troposphere decreases logarithmically with height. The occurrence of long distance transport of pollen and spores by wind is demonstrated by sampling from aircraft, and supported by much circumstantial evidence. Possible effects of this air spora on the atmosphere may be sought in alterations to: opacity, ionization, condensation nuclei, and sinks for minor gases.