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5-21 IAN Think Snow
by David Sparks, Ph.D., click here for bio
Program: Today's Idaho Ag News
Date: May 21, 12
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In a recent conversation with water specialist for the NRCS, Ron Abramovich, he discussed the weird weather patterns and snowmelt in April and the beginning of May and of course my 1st thought was, what is the impact of this on our ability to irrigate this year. Ron’s response was one of those good news bad news deals: “luckily at the end of April it did cool off so it preserved the rest of the snow that’s still up in the high country so most of our forecasts are for 50 to 60% to 120% of average north of the Snake River to the Canadian border. We will have enough water for the rest of this season North of the Snake. However, what we are seeing is very low flows south of the Snake, some of those are near some of the record low levels for this time of the year. So the Snake River is the dividing point between the wet weather we had in April and the snowpack while south of the Snake they didn’t get the snow nor the rain and stream flows are very low across Idaho’s southern border. Will that impact southern Idaho growers? The impacts will be felt mainly next year. They will get through this year because of the reservoir storage carryover being above average, so this year they can squeeze through as long as you have reservoir water. But by the end of the season most of the reservoirs will have been drafted down and we will be relying heavily on next year’s snowpack.
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