USDA: Record-Setting Warmth Prevails in the Corn Belt

January 6, 2012 02:20 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, record-setting warmth prevails. "Today's high temperatures will exceed 60°F in parts of the southern Corn Belt," USDA adds. The warm weather is thawing fields across the eastern Corn Belt, curtailing final corn harvest efforts, USDA says.

In the West, USDA says mild, dry weather prevails. "Extremely dry conditions are a growing concern from northern and central California to the western slopes of the central Rockies, both in terms of poor pasture conditions and meager high-elevation snow packs," USDA reports.

On the Plains, USDA reports the passage of a weak cold front is introducing modestly cooler air in the wake of record-setting warmth. "On Thursday, Aberdeen, South Dakota (63°), and Minot, North Dakota (61°F), were among a large number of communities experiencing their warmest January day on record," USDA explains.

In the South, USDA reports temperatures are rebounding across Florida's peninsula, allowing producers to begin assessing impacts of the Jan. 4-5 freezes. "Elsewhere, dry weather accompanies a warming trend," USDA adds.

USDA's outlook says above-normal temperatures will continue across the majority of the U.S. during the next several days. "An exception will be cooler-than-normal conditions in the vicinity of a slow-moving storm system that will develop over the south-central U.S. early next week and drift eastward," USDA explains. That storm will also produce some snow in the central and southern Rockies and adjacent Plains, and widespread, possibly heavy rain in the Gulf Coast states, USDA says. "In contrast, dry conditions will persist in much of California and the Great Basin," USDA reports.


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