Water Resources of the United States

PROJECT ALERT NOTICE (IA) IA WSC Drought Update August 16, 2012

Date: Thr, 16 Aug 2012 12:44:50 EDT

Summary: Iowa WSC Drought update for the week of August 16, 2012

The state of Iowa has received state wide rainfall for the time period of August 9-15, 2012 with statewide rainfall totals from 0.15 to 0.3 in the western half of the state and 0.5 to 1.25 inches in the eastern half of the state. The rainfall amounts for this period was 5 to 125% of the mean for the period of 1981-2010. http://mrcc.isws.illinois.edu/state_climatologists/iowa/prcp-7days.png
Crop report for this period from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.

Iowa saw a mix of cooler temperatures and widespread rainfall during the week. Rainfall amounts varied widely with the heaviest precipitation in North East and Southwest Iowa. The week’s activities included spraying crops, harvesting oats, cutting hay, and chopping corn.
There were 6.1 days suitable for fieldwork statewide during the past week. Topsoil moisture levels improved to 60 percent very short, 31 percent short, 9 percent adequate, and 0 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture is rated at 70 percent very short, 26 percent short, 4 percent adequate, and 0 percent surplus.

Ninety-four percent of the corn crop has reached the milk stage, ahead of last year’s 81 percent and the five year average of 73 percent. Eighty percent of the corn crop has reached dough stage, well ahead of last year’s 43 percent and the five year average of 37 percent. Forty-five percent of the corn crop has reached the dent stage, almost two weeks ahead of normal. Seven percent of the corn crop is now mature, almost three weeks ahead of normal. Corn condition declined slightly and now is reported at 22 percent very poor, 29 percent poor, 33 percent fair, 15 percent good, and 1 percent excellent. Pods are being set on 88 percent of the soybean crop. Soybean condition improved for the first time in seven weeks and now is rated 14 percent very poor, 23 percent poor, 38 percent fair, 24 percent good, and 1 percent excellent. Harvest of third cutting of alfalfa hay, at 88 percent complete, is a month ahead of normal.

Only fourteen percent of Iowa’s pasture and range land is rated in fair or better condition. Pasture and range condition rated 59 percent very poor, 27 percent poor, 11 percent fair, 3 percent good, and 0 percent excellent. Livestock experienced little to no stress due to seasonable weather during the week.

The Iowa WSC Continues to measure gage heights of zero flow (GZF), extend low-end ratings, and extend water-quality sensors into streamflow. The IA WSC has measured 117 gage heights of zero flow at gaging stations throughout the summer, the field units have extended low end ratings at 12 gaging stations and has 13 more low end rating extensions to do.

The real-time water quality sensors at the Iowa River at Wapello(nitrate, turbidity, and temperature) were extended this week and are currently inoperative and off of the web until longer equipment cables arrive.

Kevin Richards, IA WSC Director was invited to attend the Iowa Drought Task Force meeting hosted by Iowa Homeland Security on Friday August 17th.

Iowa Water Science Center Drought Page

Sub-Region: Midwest; Region: Central United States

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