Bone-dry July

Record month for Friendly City

Moose Jaw Times Herald - - COMING UP - CRYS­TAL SCHICK

Moose Jaw is about to fin­ish off its dri­est July since 1894, ac­cord­ing to En­vi­ron­ment Canada.

Since the be­gin­ning of the month, the city has only re­ceived 0.2 mm of pre­cip­i­ta­tion, “so barely a trace,” said Natalie Hasell, warn­ing pre­pared­ness me­te­o­rol­o­gist with En­vi­ron­ment Canada.

June and July’s pre­cip­i­ta­tion is a com­bined 34.6 mm, and is a record low for those two months. Even the spring was drier than usual, since data com­pil­ing rainfall from March to July 27, only add up to 72.4 mm. Again, the low­est in well over a cen­tury.

And while it may seem ex­tra hot to many, Moose Jaw is right around nor­mal for this time of year, if you’re look­ing at the mean av­er­age.

By av­er­ag­ing the day­time and night­time tem­per­a­ture, En­vi­ron­ment Canada de­ter­mined that Moose Jaw’s av­er­age is 19.1, whereas the reg­u­lated nor­mal be­tween 1981 and 2010 is 19.3.

“So your tem­per­a­tures are ac­tu­ally right on nor­mal,” said Hasell.

For day­time highs in July, she said Moose Jaw has been around 28 de­grees. But there have been much hot­ter days, such as July 10th when it was 35.8 de­grees.

“The sav­ing grace for the month I think has been the overnight tem­per­a­tures,” said Hasell.

Overnight tem­per­a­tures have been slightly lower than nor­mal. Gen­er­ally, they sit around 12.3 de­grees, but this month are 10.2.

“So, it’s the overnight tem­per­a­tures that have made the av­er­age close to nor­mal,” she said.

While sun­bathers, campers and lake go­ers may all by en­joy­ing this dry heat, farm­ers and ranch­ers are not.

Be­cause of the dry heat, farm­ers in the area could be fac­ing lower than nor­mal crop yields said Brent Flaten, in­te­grated pest man­age­ment spe­cial­ist, with Saskatchewan Min­istry of Agri­cul­ture Moose Jaw.

“This hot weather is go­ing to hurry stuff along, some plants are just dy­ing back be­cause they are run­ning out of mois­ture,” he said.

Some pest, such as grasshop­pers, are more present when there is dry heat.

“They’re not picky,” said Flaten, “they’ll pretty much go for any crop.”

There is not much farm­ers can do, he said, but wait out the sit­u­a­tion and pray for some rain.

Un­for­tu­nately for farm­ers, En­vi­ron­ment Canada is not pre­dict­ing much rain, if any at all, in the short-term fore­cast.

“Un­less things dra­mat­i­cally change by the end of the month,” said Hasell, “you will see the dri­est val­ues for July in a num­ber of time pe­ri­ods.”

The sav­ing grace for the month I think has been the overnight tem­per­a­tures Natalie Hasell, warn­ing pre­pared­ness me­te­o­rol­o­gist, En­vi­ron­ment Canada


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