Yucky Ducky Weather

It’s great weather for ducks and geese, but the rain is causing delays for farmers getting into their fields and likely others working construction or other outdoor projects.

It’s also not good weather and definitely not a good day for a man who drove his compact car into the water in the flooded Sixth Street underpass in Minot on Wednesday and the vehicle had to be pulled out by a local towing company just after 1 p.m.

“Every day that goes by it gets later and later,” said Jim Tarasenko, a research specialist at the North Central Research and Extension Center south of Minot, referring to farmers getting into their fields.

Tarasenko said the total moisture at the center for the month so far has been 0.67 inches and the long-term average for the month of May is 2.36 inches.

“Since Jan. 1 until today (Wednesday) at 8 a.m., we have had 3.6 inches moisture,” Tarasenko said. “In 2013 through the same period (Jan. 1 through May 7), we had 4.94 inches.”

Also, as of 8 a.m., Wednesday, the center had .27 of an inch of rain and Tuesday .17 of an inch.

The North Dakota Wheat Commission, in its Crop Progress Report on Tuesday, said the cool, wet conditions persist across much of the hard red spring wheat region, stalling planting for another week. The report says: “Some progress was made in South Dakota and Montana where planting completion rates are now 59 and 37 percent complete, respectively. However, the big delays continue in North Dakota, with 5 percent of the crop planted, and Minnesota, with 4 percent of the spring wheat planted. Planting rates are now behind last year and the five-year average in many states. Producers are hoping for improved weather conditions so that they can continue or begin fieldwork in the next week. Across the U.S., 7 percent of the spring wheat has emerged behind the five-year average of 17 percent. The majority of the emerged wheat is in the Pacific Northwest states, South Dakota and Montana.

“Producers in the North Dakota durum region are also experiencing cool, wet conditions that have limited the amount of durum that has been planted. To date, only 1 percent of the durum crop in North Dakota has been planted, behind the average of 14 percent.”

“We’re nowhere near getting in the field,” Tarasenko said.

But in the meantime, he said, the “ducks are swimming in the fields. They are loving it.”