Current Watches and Warnings
Public Information Statement
Statement as of 4:00 PM CDT on October 08, 2015
... extreme short term drought conditions across much
of central and west central Mississippi and a small
portion of southeast Arkansas and northeast Louisiana...
... severe short term drought conditions cover the remaining
area west of a line from Lamar to Newton to Oktibbeha
... moderate short term drought and abnormally dry conditions
are generally along and east of line from Lamar to Newton to
Oktibbeha County... .
Since the last drought statement on September 18th, normal to above
normal rainfall has fallen from southeast Mississippi into east
Mississippi. Most of this rainfall occurred 2 weeks ago with only
isolated showers since. This rainfall has allowed conditions to not
significantly worsen over this region during the 2 week period.
The remainder of our WFO Jackson hydrologic service area (hsa) in
Mississippi... northeast Louisiana... and southeast Arkansas has seen
some scattered showers; however, most of it was over 2 weeks ago.
Some isolated rainfall amounts up to an inch were reported across
the hsa; however, most areas received little or no rainfall to
provide drought relief. This has allowed conditions to significantly
worsen since the last statement.
Summary of impacts...
As stated in the previous drought statement... the agriculture season
has been about feast and famine. During the Spring, Fields were too
wet to get into to prepare for planting. Beginning in June, rainfall
began to taper off across the region. Rainfall that has occurred
since June has been scattered across the area.
The crop moisture index shows severely dry soils across northeast
Louisiana, southeast Arkansas, and all west Mississippi and portions
of central Mississippi. Abnormally dry to excessively dry conditions
are noted across south... southeast... and east Mississippi.
Reports from various Mississippi extension service agents show that
crop yields are down 10 to 30 percent. Cotton planted early enough
has done well. The Grade of Cotton is good due to the lack of
heavier rain to damage it. Soy bean yields may be down even more
that all other crops in general. Peanut farmers have had much
difficulty harvesting due to the hard ground. For most large scale
farms... the current dry weather is of great benefit to complete the
harvesting or crops and to prepare fields for next season. Planting
of fall crops has been significantly delayed. Very few fall Home
Gardens have been planted. This will be a problem for many country
people who depend upon fall crops.
Across northeast Louisiana... non-irrigated soy bean yields have been
very low. Across the region, around a quarter of the fields do not
irrigation. Other of the other crops have done well especially in
Catahoula and Concordia. There are no reports from southeast
Pasture land has taken a hit all across the WFO Jackson area. In
some areas, cattle are already being fed Hay. Fall pastureland is in
trouble as well unless fall rains start soon. Cattle ponds are
falling rapidly. Over half of those in the severe to extreme drought
areas are unusable due to low water and poor water quality. Some
streams that dry up periodically are no longer flowing with only
permanent streams still flowing.
Fire danger impacts.
Keetch-Byram drought index (kdbi) values from 600 to 800 are
associated with an increased wildfire threat. Intense, deep burning
fires can be expected. Live fuels can also be expected to burn
actively at these levels.
Kdbi values are greater than 700 across all of the WFO Jackson
hydrologic service area with the exception of southwest and
southeast Mississippi where values range from 600 to 700. Fire
potential is high across the entire service area.
Louisiana Parish fire bans...
Morehouse, West Carroll, Richland, and Catahoula parishes
Southeast Arkansas fire bans...
Ashley and Chicot counties.
Mississippi fire bans...
Madison, Hinds, Yazoo, Adams, Copiah, Franklin, Humphreys, Lincoln,
Rankin, Smith, Jefferson Davis, Simpson, Carroll, Lawrence,
Montgomery, Lauderdale, Washington, and Holmes counties.
The United States geological survey (usgs) water
watch web Page shows 7 day average streamflow conditions are below
to much below normal across much of the drought areas. Flow in the
Tensas river of northeast Louisiana is extremely low. Streamflow in
the Chickasawhay River and Black Creek in east and southeast
Mississippi has near normal 7 day average streamflow.
Area lakes and ponds continue to fall. Ross Barnett Reservoir on the
Pearl River has fallen steadily since the last statement from 296.04
to 295.52 feet. This is well below its normal pool of 297.5 feet.
Grenada Lake in north Mississippi has fallen from 210.04 feet to
208.89 feet. Okatibbee Reservoir near Meridian has fallen from a
pool of 340.60 to 340.11 feet. This lake has not fallen as much due
to the significant rain that fell near the end of the month of
There are currently no known water restrictions.
We had the 2nd driest July to September on record
for Jackson. We also had the 4th and 5th driest September on record
at Greenwood and Greenville, respectively. This was also the 7th
driest September on record at Vicksburg-Tallulah.
There has been little to no rainfall across the area since the first
of October. Only a few showers from Kemper to Lowndes counties have
City: rain departure October rain departure
(sep-Oct 7) from norm from norm
Jackson 0.95 in -2.91 T in -0.80
Hawkins ap 2.00 in -2.16 0.00 in -0.94
Meridian 3.60 in -0.63 T in -0.80
Tallulah 0.78 in -3.04 0.00 in -0.93
Hattiesburg 2.06 in -2.97 0.00 in -0.95
Greenwood/ 0.34 in -4.20 0.00 in -0.88
Greenville 0.50 in -3.62 0.00 in -1.04
Dry and warm conditions will prevail for the remainder of the day
and during the first part of the day on Friday. A cold front will
push through on Friday night bringing with it a chance of light rain
mainly north of I-20. Temperature will cool to more seasonal levels
through Tuesday. Another cold front will push through on Tuesday
bringing another chance of light rain. Dry and cooler conditions
return after the frontal passage. There looks to be no drought
relief in the next 7 to 10 days.
The three month temperature outlook for October through December...
issued by the climate prediction center (cpc) on September 17th
indicates equal chances for above normal... near normal... or below
normal temperatures. The three month rainfall outlook through
December indicates above normal probabilities for above normal
rainfall. The enso cycle is officially considered a strong El Nino.
This strengthening El Nino will begin to bring some relief from the
drought conditions in a November to December time frame.
Hydrologic summary and outlook... area ponds and lakes will continue
to drop. Rivers and stream will also drop until substantial rainfall
Next issuance date...
The next drought statement will be issued around the 22nd of October
or as conditions warrant.
Related web sites...
National Weather Service jackson: weather.Gov/Jan National
integrated drought information system: www.Drought.Gov U.S. Drought
monitor: droughtmonitor.Unl.Edu drought impact reporter:
www.Droughtreporter.Unl.Edu climate prediction center:
www.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.Gov la office of state climatology:
www.Losc.Lsu.Edu ls ag center: www.Lsuagcenter.Com United States
geological survey: http://water.USGS.Gov la department of
agriculture and forestry burn bans: www.Ldaf.State.La.US Arkansas
fire info: www.Arkfireinfo.Org Mississippi fire bans information:
www.Mfc.MS.Gov/burn-bans.Php Mississippi State climate office:
The U.S. Drought monitor is a facilitated collaboration among
various agencies... including the National Weather Service... state
climatologist... the climate prediction center... and the U.S. Drought
mitigation center. Information for this statement has been gathered
from NWS/FAA observation sites... the usda..the U.S. Army corps of
engineers..USGS... forestry interest in Mississippi, Arkansas, and
Questions or comments...
If you have any questions about information on this statement,
National Weather Service forecast office 234 Weather Service drive
Jackson, MS 39232
Phone: (601) 936-2189 email: Marty.Pope@noaa.Gov
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