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 Post subject: Colorado Hay Report and Drought Outlooks – 02/16/17
Post Posted: Feb 16, 2017 10:21 am 
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Colorado Hay Report and Drought Outlooks – 02/16/17

Here are your weekly excerpts from the USDA’s Colorado Hay Report, U.S. Drought Monitor’s comparison report for Colorado, excerpts from the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), and N.O.A.A.'s Seasonal Drought Outlook with its pertinent discussion.

I will attempt to issue this report every Thursday before noon but since this is a compendium of excerpts from various sources, it is possible that a late submission to you will occur. If that is the case, I will post a notice to that effect.

Hopefully, these reports going forward will help to keep you not only informed on the state’s drought conditions, but more importantly, the resulting impact on hay availability and corresponding changes in its pricing. These reports do not accurately reflect the final selling price of hay to you. Besides its production, processing, transportation, and (in some cases), storage will add to the final cost. I estimate that you can expect to pay an additional $1 or $2 (or more) per bale.

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The Big Picture

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GL_GR310

Greeley, CO Thu, Feb 16, 2017 USDA-CO Dept of Ag Market News

Colorado Hay Report

Compared to last week, prices were mostly steady with activity and demand moderate in all classes. Producers are reporting that grass hay is in highest demand currently with supplies dwindling. Reports also indicate lots of Colorado hay being shipped south.

The USDA NRCS National Water and Climate Center’s Colorado SNOTEL Snow/Precipitation Update Report for Thursday, February 16, 2017 has the Gunnison River Basin Snow Water Equivalent at 159%, the Upper Colorado River basin at 144%, the South Platte River Basin at 138%, the Laramie and North Platte River Basins at 130%, the Yampa and White River Basins at 123%, the Arkansas River Basin at 146%, the Upper Rio Grande Basin at 146% and the San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan River Basins at 158% as a percent of the median of all SNOTEL sites in each basin compared to previous years.

According to the United State Drought Monitor, in eastern Colorado, moderate drought conditions (D1) were extended to northwest Yuma County, northern Washington County, and southeast Logan County. This area has received below 50 percent of normal precipitation since the beginning of October, and recent weather has been hot and windy. The winter wheat also appears to be in poor condition. Additionally, abnormally dry (D0) conditions were expanded to the northern border of Colorado in Weld County.

All prices reported are FOB at the stack or barn unless otherwise noted. Prices reflect load lots of hay. If you have hay for sale or need hay, use the services of the Colorado Department of Agriculture website: http://www.coloradoagriculture.com.

Northeast Colorado Areas

Alfalfa

Large Squares: Premium 150.00; Premium/Good 130.00; Good/Fair 100.00.

Alfalfa/Grass Mix

Small Squares: Premium 240.00-250.00 (7.75-9.00 per bale), small lot.
Round Bales: Premium 127.00.

No reported quotes for all other classes of hay.

Southeast Colorado Areas

Alfalfa

Large Squares: Premium 150.00.
Small Squares: Supreme 200.00 (6.50-7.00 per bales).

Grass

Large Squares: Premium 220.00-227.00; Premium/Good 210.00
Small Squares: Premium 245.00 (6.50 per bale), retail.
Round Bales: Good 150.00.

Sorghum Sudangrass

Round Bales: Good 75.00.

Triticale

Large Squares: Good 90.00.

No reported quotes for all other classes of hay.

San Luis Valley Area

Alfalfa

Large Squares: Supreme/Premium 150.00; Premium 140.00; Good 135.00; Fair 125.00.

Alfalfa/Grass Mix

Large Squares: Good 150.00.

No reported quotes for all other classes of hay.

Southwest Colorado Areas

Orchard Grass

Small Squares: Fair 210.00 (9.00 per bale), small lot.

Alfalfa/Grass Mix

Small Squares: Premium 180.00 (6.00 per bale).

No reported quotes from all other classes of hay.

Mountains and Northwest Colorado Areas

Grass

Large Squares: Good/Fair 85.00 outside stored.
Small Squares: Premium 190.00 (5.50 per bale).

No reported quotes for all other classes of hay.

Legend:

Northeast: Weld, Washington, Morgan, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Lincoln, Elbert, Adams,
Sedgwick, Yuma, Larimer, Jefferson, Douglas, Kit Carson, Phillips, Logan,
Boulder, Arapahoe, and El Paso.

Southeast: Fremont, Custer, Huerfano, Las Animas, Bent, Otero, Prowers, Crowley,
and Pueblo.

San Luis Valley: Saguache, Alamosa, Costilla, Conejos, Rio Grande, and Mineral.

Southwest: Mesa, Delta, Montrose, Ouray, San Miguel, Montezuma, Dolores, San
Juan, Hinsdale, Archuleta, and La Lata.

Mountains and Northwest: Moffat, Routt, Jackson, Rio Blanco, Garfield, Gunnison,
Teller, Grand, Chaffee, Park, Clear Creek, Gilpin, Summit, Lake, and Eagle.


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Drought Monitor

NIDIS data collection for this report is cut off at 7:00 a.m. every Tuesday. The data are then released every Thursday at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time. Note that some of the contributing data (a.k.a. feeder reports) are shown after the USDM Comparison Report starting with the Glossary section.

USDM Comparison Report

Image

(1) This week, .00% of the state is in D4 (Exceptional) drought conditions.
(2) Last week, .00% of the state was in D4 (Exceptional) drought conditions.
(3) Three months ago, .00% of the state was in D4 (Exceptional) drought conditions.
(4) One year ago, .00% of the state was in D4 (Exceptional) drought conditions.

Glossary:

AHPS – Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service ( a N.O.A.A. service)
D0 – Abnormally Dry
D1 – Moderate Drought
D2 – Severe Drought
D3 – Exceptional Drought
D4 – Extreme Drought
ENSO – El Nino/La Nina Southern Oscillation
Nada – Spanish for “Nothing”
NASS - USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service
NIDIS – National Integrated Drought Information System
NRCS – National Resources Conservation Service (USDA)
RFV – Relative Feed Value
SPI – Standardized Precipitation Index
SNOTEL – Snow Telemetry (an automated snowpack monitoring system)
UCRB – Upper Colorado River Basin
USDM – US Drought Monitor
VegDRI – Vegetation Drought Response Index
WYTD – Water-Year-To-Date

US Drought Monitor Summary

Summary for Feb 14, 2017


It was a warm and windy week across the entirety of the Upper Colorado River Basin and eastern Colorado. Two storms brought moisture to the high country over the past week: one last Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, and the other on Friday and Saturday. The second storm brought precipitation to the high and low elevations of southern Colorado through the weekend and into early this week. The highest precipitation totals for this week were in the headwaters of the Upper Green River Basin, where 2.00"-4.00" of precipitation fell. Fractions of the Duchesne and Gunnison River Basins also received over 2.00" of precipitation. Totals in southern Colorado were lower, but were enough to push precipitation above average for the area over the last 30 days. Northeast Colorado has been dry.

Conditions were spring-like across the basin and eastern Colorado. Temperatures for the week were at least six degrees above normal, and over 15 degrees above normal in some areas, including most of eastern Colorado. Both the west and east sides of the Continental Divide were subject to windy conditions. Evaporative demand was much above average for eastern Colorado.

Water supplies across the basin are in excellent shape. Snowpack, reservoir storage, and 7-day average streamflows are all currently above average. Snowpack in the Duchesne and Upper Green River Basins has already exceeded the mean seasonal snowpack peak. The one water supply concern continues to be low soil moisture in eastern Colorado. South Platte and Arkansas River Basin snowpack are in great shape, so irrigated lands appear to be in less danger of ensuing impacts, but dry land agriculture and ranchland will be counting on spring rains to recharge the soils. We'll keep an eye on this going forward.

Recommendations

UCRB:
Status Quo. No drought here.

Eastern Colorado: It is recommended that D1 be added to northwest Yuma County, northern Washington County, and southeast Logan County. This area has received below 50% of normal precipitation for the water year to date, and recent weather has been hot and windy. The winter wheat here is looking worse than areas further south that are currently listed as D1.

It is recommended that D0 be extended to the northern border of Colorado in Weld County.

===============


** New Report **


U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook

Latest Seasonal Assessment – During the past month, a majority of the ongoing drought areas improved throughout the continental U.S. with the largest improvement occurring across central and southern California. The coverage of severe (D2) to exceptional (D4) drought over the continental U.S. is at its lowest since October 2010.

The drought outlook valid from February 16, 2017 through May 31, 2017 is based on initial conditions including snow and reservoir levels across the western U.S., 7-day precipitation forecasts, extended range (6-10/8-14 day) precipitation and temperature outlooks, the CPC March through May (MAM) precipitation and temperature outlooks, and climatology.

Based on the anomalously wet winter, additional heavy precipitation likely during the remainder of February, and a relatively wet climatology through March, continued improvement or removal of drought is forecast across most of central and southern California. However, long-term hydrological impacts across California may persist beyond this wet season. The seasonal precipitation outlook and climatology favor removal of drought across parts of the northern Great Basin, northern Rockies, and northern high Plains. Removal or improvement of drought is also forecast across central and eastern Oklahoma along with parts of Arkansas and Missouri, which become increasingly wet during the outlook period. Prospects for broad scale improvement diminish across the central and southern high Plains since their climatology becomes wetter later in the spring and summer. Therefore, persistence is most likely for the long-term drought area over the central and southern high Plains. The moderate drought area along the middle Texas Gulf Coast is expected to be short-lived due to heavy rainfall forecast during the next week, while persistence or a slight expansion of drought is favored across the lower Rio Grande Valley.

The highest forecast confidence for the eastern U.S. exists across south Florida where persistence and development is forecast due to a lack of rainfall coupled with periods of unseasonably warm temperatures this winter, and a relatively dry time of year. The onset of the convective rainfall season typically begins in late May across south Florida.

Improvement and removal of drought is forecast for the southern Appalachians and Tennessee Valley since late February and March are a relatively wet time of year and the March outlook calls for an increased chance of above-median precipitation. Short-term drought across the mid-Atlantic is expected to persist and potentially expand during the next week or two. Without support for a protracted drought among the precipitation tools at the longer range, improvement and removal of drought is most likely for the mid-Atlantic by the end of May, albeit with low confidence. Improvement and removal of drought is also forecast across the Northeast.

Climatology favors removal of the small drought areas along the leeward sides of Kauai, Maui, and the Big Island of Hawaii. Alaska and Puerto Rico are expected to remain drought-free through the end of May.

Discussion for the Seasonal Drought Outlook – Tools used in the U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook (SDO) included the official Climate Prediction Center (CPC) temperature and precipitation outlooks for March through May 2017 (MAM), various short- and medium-range forecasts and models such as the 7-day quantitative precipitation forecast (QPF) totals from the Weather Prediction Center (WPC), the 6-10 day and 8-14 day CPC extended-range forecasts (ERFs), dynamical models (CFSv2, NMME, IRI, IMME, and ECMWF), the 384-hour total precipitation forecasts from several runs of the GFS, the four-month Palmer drought termination and amelioration probabilities, climatology for the MAM season, and initial conditions.

Major drought reduction continued across California during the past month, with 1 to 3 class improvements across the southern two-thirds of California, while the northern third of the state is drought-free. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, valid on February 7, 47 percent of California is designated with long-term drought, and less than 1 percent designated in the extreme (D3) to exceptional (D4) categories. The coverage of California drought is at its lowest since January 2012. According to preliminary information from the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), California had its 6th wettest January during the 123-year period of record. As of February 14, snow water content is around 200 percent of normal throughout the Sierra Mountains. Data from the California Department of Water Resources indicates that many of the larger reservoirs throughout the state are running at or above their historical average. However, the Perris reservoir in southern California is below 50 percent of its historical average. The Cachuma Reservoir in Santa Barbara County is currently at 15.5 percent capacity as of February 9. Another round of heavy precipitation (rain and high-elevation snow) is likely across California during the next week. The WPC 7-day precipitation forecast indicates more than 5 inches (liquid equivalent) across the favored terrain areas of southern California with 1 to 3 inches of precipitation extending as far inland as southern Nevada. Given the wet winter so far and the likelihood of heavy precipitation during the next week, continued improvement or removal of drought is expected across most of the long-term drought areas of California and Nevada. It should be noted that hydrological impacts such as ground water may not completely recover due to the longevity of the drought.

Forecast confidence is high for California and Nevada but low for the persistence across the desert Southwest.

A couple of small long-term drought areas exist across western Montana and eastern Oregon. Snow water content values are currently running at or above-average throughout the Pacific Northwest, northern Great Basin, and northern Rockies. Based on the favorable snowpack and the CPC seasonal outlook calling for an increased chance of above-median precipitation, removal is most likely across the lingering drought areas of eastern Oregon and western Montana.

Forecast confidence is moderate for eastern Oregon and western Montana.

Long-term drought continues across the high Plains of eastern Wyoming and western South Dakota. A slight tilt the odds for above-median precipitation is forecast for this region from March through May. 30 to 40 percent of annual precipitation typically occurs during this three month period. Based on these factors, drought removal is forecast.

Forecast confidence is moderate for the northern high Plains.

During the past three months, long-term drought expanded slightly across the central and southern high Plains. The early part of the outlook period, through the end of March, is a relatively dry time of year for these areas. Since this region typically becomes wetter only during May, persistence is most likely on a broad scale from the high Plains of eastern Colorado south to New Mexico.

Forecast confidence is low for the central and southern high Plains.

Moderate (D1) to extreme (D3) drought continues across the southern Great Plains and parts of Arkansas and Missouri. During the past 48 hours, a widespread area of 1 to 3 inches of beneficial rainfall occurred across the southern two-thirds of Oklahoma. This recent rainfall is expected to prompt slight improvement to the drought across Oklahoma in next week's USDM. Elsewhere, the improvement and removal of drought forecast across Arkansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma is based largely on climatology as April and May become increasingly wet.

Forecast confidence is moderate for Arkansas, Missouri, and central/eastern Oklahoma.

Moderate drought recently developed along the middle Gulf Coast of Texas. Since the WPC 7-day precipitation forecast calls for several inches of rainfall over this region, this drought is expected to be short-lived. Meanwhile, drought is expected to persist and potentially expand slightly across the lower Rio Grande Valley where medium to extended range forecasts are drier and signals are weak beyond these time scales.

Forecast confidence is high for the middle Gulf Coast of Texas and low for the lower Rio Grande Valley.

Long-term drought persists across the southern Appalachians and Tennessee Valley with northeast Georgia suffering from extreme drought. March and April are two of the wetter months of the year across these areas. Precipitation signals among tools at the extended range are weak across the Southeast, while spread is large among the climate models. Although improvement or removal of drought is forecast for the southern Appalachians and Tennessee Valley based on climatology, confidence is low. It should be noted that the CPC seasonal outlooks calls for enhanced odds for above normal temperatures for March through May. Abnormal warmth could offset any beneficial rainfall, which also limits forecast confidence.

Forecast confidence is low for the southern Appalachians and Tennessee Valley.

A lack of winter precipitation led to an expansion of abnormal dryness and moderate drought across the mid-Atlantic. Soil moisture currently ranks in the lowest 10th percentile across the Piedmont of Maryland and northern Virginia. The mid-Atlantic including eastern North Carolina is primed for additional expansion of drought in the next few weeks. Except for the 7-day forecast of little to no precipitation, precipitation tools offer weak or differing signals for this region. The latest deterministic GFS model runs on February 15 indicate a wetter pattern by the beginning of March. Removal of moderate drought is forecast for the mid-Atlantic, albeit with low confidence, since there is no strong support for a protracted drought through the end of May. This region will be closely monitored for the monthly outlook released on February 28.

Forecast confidence is low for the mid-Atlantic.

Precipitation amounts have varied from New Jersey north to New England during the past month, but drought generally remained steady or improved by 1 category. Given the favorable time of year for recharge, continued improvement or removal of drought is most likely for the Northeast. However, improvement to long-term impacts such as ground water across parts of the Northeast is uncertain.

Forecast confidence is low for the Northeast.

Moderate drought was introduced on the USDM, valid on February 14, across southern parts of the Florida peninsula. Much of the Florida peninsula received less than 50 percent of its normal precipitation during the past 90 days and above-normal temperatures prevailed throughout much of the winter. Since the convective season typically begins late in May across the southern Florida peninsula, persistence and development is forecast for south Florida.

Forecast confidence is moderate for south Florida.

Very small areas of moderate drought remain along the leeward sides of Kauai, Maui, and the Big Island of Hawaii. Since late February through April is a relatively wet time of year across Hawaii, drought removal is forecast. Although abnormal dryness currently exists across southeast mainland Alaska, low confidence precludes an introduction of development to this region. Drought is also not expected to develop across Puerto Rico through the end of May.

Forecast confidence is moderate for Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico.


Forecaster: Brad Pugh

Next Seasonal Outlook issued: March 16, 2017 at 8:30 AM EDT

_________________
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“Crack is cheap. I make too much money to ever smoke crack. Let’s get that straight. OK? We don’t do crack. We don’t do that. Crack is whack.” ~ Whitney Houston


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