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More rain on the plains

More rain on the plains

New 30- and 90-day climate outlooks are for wetter weather

The new 30- and 90-day climate outlooks continue to indicate wetter than average conditions are more likely for most of the region through the summer, says Dennis Todey, South Dakota state climatologist.

"The June to August outlook, in particular, has above average precipitation chances likely over most of South Dakota and the Great Plains," Todey says. "The June outlook has wetter chances just in southern South Dakota."

New 30- and 90-day climate outlooks are for wetter weather

Temperature outlooks are listed as equal chances for below or above average for both the next 30- and 90-days. Assuming the wetter conditions do occur, Todey said near-normal to cooler temperatures are more likely to exist for the summer. "Rarely do warm and wet conditions occur together during the warm season in the Plains," Todey says.

El Nino in the Pacific is impacting much of the outlook. "El Nino is developing, which seems very likely to strengthen and persist through the summer," Todey says.

El Nino's are more typically a winter phenomenon, Todey explains, strengthening in the fall and weakening in the spring. "This El Nino is acting quite the opposite of usual strengthening through the spring," he says. "The impact of the likely wetter conditions will be to continue to reduce the precipitation deficits still existing in some places of eastern South Dakota."

The newest U.S. Drought Outlook concurs with this idea, showing drought reduction as likely in areas still listed on the U.S. Drought Monitor map. "The increased precipitation totals should generally be good for agricultural production for the year after the dry fall to spring period," Todey says. "Soils still have some deficits in the east to overcome. Thus, the additional precipitation is still needed."

One bad thing about wetter conditions – it will likely increase disease potential for various crops as the growing season progresses, he says.

Source: SDSU Extension

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