Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Corpus Christi, TX

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AXUS74 KCRP 022347
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DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CORPUS CHRISTI TX
647 PM CDT THU APR 2 2015

...ONLY A SMALL PORTION OF SOUTH TEXAS REMAINS IN MODERATE
DROUGHT STATUS AS EL-NINO DEVELOPS IN THE EQUATORIAL PACIFIC...

...WELL ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL DURING MARCH KEEPS THE CITY OF
CORPUS CHRISTI IN STAGE 2 WATER RESTRICTIONS...

...OUTLOOK FOR APRIL THROUGH JUNE CALLS FOR A GREATER LIKELIHOOD
FOR ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL AND BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES OVER SOUTH
TEXAS...

.SYNOPSIS...
JUST WHEN IT SEEMED THAT EL-NINO WOULD NEVER DEVELOP IN THE
EQUATORIAL PACIFIC...EL-NINO OFFICIALLY BEGAN IN EARLY MARCH.
CERTAINLY...SOUTH TEXAS WEATHER DURING MARCH (AND SINCE THE
BEGNINNING OF 2015) STRONGLY MIRRORED CLIMATOLOGY DURING EL-NINO.
DURING THE MONTH...RAINFALL WAS WELL ABOVE NORMAL OVER ALL AREAS
OF THE HYDROLOGIC SERVICE AREA (HSA)...WITH AREAS WITHIN THE HSA
RECEIVING ANYWHERE BETWEEN 200 TO MORE THAN 400 PERCENT OF THEIR
NORMAL RAINFALL DURING THE MONTH. FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE JUNE
2014...RIVER FLOODING WAS OBSERVED OVER SOUTH TEXAS...WITH SEVERAL
LOCATIONS EXPERIENCING MINOR TO MODERATE FLOODING (AND A FEW
APPROACHING FLOOD STAGE).

AREAS WHERE MODERATE TO SEVERE DROUGHT CONDITIONS EXISTED
IN LATE FEBRUARY RECEIVED BETWEEN 200 TO 350 PERCENT OF THEIR
NORMAL RAINFALL DURING MARCH. ALSO...SINCE THE BEGINNING OF
2015...ALL OF SOUTH TEXAS HAS RECEIVED AT LEAST 125 PERCENT OF
THEIR NORMAL RAINFALL. AS A RESULT...MOST DROUGHT AREAS WERE
ELIMINATED OVER SOUTH TEXAS THAT WERE PRESENT IN LATE FEBRUARY.

HOWEVER...THERE REMAINS A VERY SMALL PORTION OF NORTHEASTERN BEE
COUNTY AND NORTHWESTERN GOLIAD COUNTY IN MODERATE DROUGHT
(D1)...WITH SOME AREAS A BIT FARTHER SOUTH...WEST AND EAST
CONSIDERED ABNORMALLY DRY. THESE ARE AREAS WHERE RAINFALL HAS BEEN
NEAR TO SLIGHTLY BELOW NORMAL DURING THE PAST 180 DAYS (AROUND THE
BEGINNING OF THE WATER YEAR).

ACCORDING TO THE DROUGHT MONITOR PRODUCT...VALID ON MARCH 31
2015...NORTHEASTERN PORTIONS OF BEE COUNTY (INCLUDING THE
COMMUNITIES OF TULSITA...PETTUS...AND CAESAR) AND EXTREME
NORTHWESTERN PORTIONS GOLIAD COUNTY (NEAR BUT WEST OF CHARCO) ARE
IN D1 STATUS. OUTSIDE THE D1 AREA...THE NORTHERN HALF OF BEE
COUNTY (NEAR AND NORTH OF BEEVILLE)...THE NORTHWESTERN HALF OF
GOLIAD COUNTY (NEAR...NORTH AND NORTHWEST OF THE CITY OF
GOLIAD)...AND A SMALL PORTION OF LIVE OAK COUNTY (INCLUDING
OAKVILLE...NELL AND RAY POINT) ARE IN D0 STATUS. FINALLY...A
SMALL PORTION OF EXTREME EASTERN VICTORIA COUNTY (NEAR AND EAST OF
INEZ AND NEAR/ALONG THE VICTORIA-JACKSON COUNTY LINE) IS ALSO IN
D0 STATUS...ALONG WITH A VERY SMALL PORTION OF EXTREME NORTHERN LA
SALLE COUNTY.

FOR A MORE PRECISE EVALUATION OF THE CURRENT DROUGHT MONITOR
PRODUCT SHOWING DROUGHT CONDITIONS OVER SOUTH TEXAS (AND ALL OF
TEXAS)...GO TO THE CORPUS CHRISTI DROUGHT SITE (LOWER CASE):

HTTP://WWW.SRH.NOAA.GOV/CRP/?N=DROUGHT

SUMMARY OF IMPACTS...

STATE AND LOCAL ACTIONS.
ACCORDING TO THE TEXAS FOREST SERVICE BURN BAN MAP OF APRIL
2...BEE AND GOLIAD COUNTIES HAVE REMOVED THEIR BURN BANS. THAT
MEANS THAT NO SOUTH TEXAS COUNTY IS UNDER A BURN BAN AT THIS TIME.

RESIDENTS PLANNING ON BURNING SHOULD STILL CONTACT COUNTY
OFFICIALS TO ENSURE THAT BURNING IS ALLOWED...AND ALSO TO SEE IF
ANY RESTRICTIONS ON HOW AND WHEN TO BURN ARE IN EFFECT. IF BURNING
IS ALLOWED...BE SURE IT IS NOT DONE DURING WINDY DAYS WITH LOW
HUMIDITY...AS THIS COULD RESULT IN A FIRE WHICH COULD EASILY GET
OUT OF CONTROL. REMEMBER...SPRING TENDS TO BRING HIGHER WINDS AND
AT TIMES LOWER HUMIDITY TO SOUTH TEXAS...WHICH COULD RESULT IN A
UNWANTED AND UNEXPECTED WILDFIRE.

AFTER BRIEFLY FALLING BELOW 30 PERCENT ON MARCH 8...HEAVY RAINFALL
OVER THE WATERSHED ON MARCH 8-9 SPARED THE CITY OF CORPUS CHRISTI
FROM GOING INTO STAGE 3 WATER RESTRICTIONS. ADDITIONAL RAINFALL
DURING MARCH BROUGH THE COMBINED CAPACITY TO JUST ABOVE 34 PERCENT
IN LATE MARCH...AND LEVELS HAVE REMAINED NEAR 34 PERCENT IN EARLY
APRIL. THUS...STAGE 2 RESTRICTIONS REMAIN IN EFFECT. SOME OF THE
STAGE 2 RESTRICTIONS ARE...

* ONE WATERING DAY PER WEEK COINCIDING WITH THE CUSTOMER`S GARBAGE
  PICK UP DAY. RESTRICTIONS FOR CORPUS CHRISTI RESIDENTS
  INCLUDE...

  - WATERING OF LANDSCAPES BY SPRINKLER IRRIGATION IS NOT ALLOWED
    BETWEEN 10 AM AND 6 PM. USE OF HAND-HELD BUCKET OR HOSE...OR
    DRIP IRRIGATION SYSTEM WITH SHUTOFF NOZZLES PERMITTED ANY TIME
    ON ANY DAY.

  - HOME CAR WASHINGS ARE TO BE DONE ONLY BY USE OF HAND-HELD
    BUCKET OR HOSE EQUIPPED WITH SHUTOFF NOZZLE. USE OF COMMERCIAL
    CAR WASHES STILL ALLOWED ANY TIME.

  - FILLING POOLS LIMITED TO DESIGNATED WATERING DAY.

  - MAINTAINING INTEGRITY OF BUILDING FOUNDATION BY USE OF DRIP
    IRRIGATION OR HAND HELD HOSE ONLY.

  - USE OF POTABLE WATER FOR IRRIGATION OF GOLF COURSES IS LIMITED
    TO DESIGNATED WATERING DAY.

RESIDENTS AND BUSINESSES NOT COMPLYING WITH RESTRICTIONS WILL
RECEIVE A FINE. MORE INFORMATION CONCERNING ALL STAGES OF WATER
RESTRICTIONS (AND REQUESTS FOR EXEMPTIONS AND VARIANCES) CAN BE
FOUND AT: WWW.CCTEXAS.COM/GOVERNMENT/WATER.

ADDITIONAL MINOR DIFFERENCES ARE OBSERVED AT PORTLAND AND
INGLESIDE. FOR MORE INFORMATION FOR THESE LOCATIONS...PLEASE
VISIT:

HTTP://PORTLANDTX.COM
HTTP://INGLESIDETX.GOV

FLOWS ALONG THE GUADALUPE RIVER HAVE REMAINED WELL ABOVE 150
CFS OVER THE PAST FEW WEEKS. THUS...NO RESTRICTIONS ARE IN
EFFECT...ALTHOUGH RESIDENTS ARE ENCOURAGED TO CONSERVE WATER.

THE CITY OF LAREDO CONTINUES TO ASK RESIDENTS TO CONSERVE
WATER...BUT ALLOW WATERING AT ANY TIME.

OTHER RESIDENTS IN SOUTH TEXAS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO
CONTINUE TO CONSERVE WATER. ALTHOUGH NEARLY ALL OF SOUTH TEXAS IS
DROUGHT-FREE...RESERVOIR LEVELS ARE STILL VERY LOW...AS WELL AS
LAKES OR AQUIFERS. WATERING SHOULD BE DONE ONLY TO KEEP SOIL
MOISTURE INTACT. ALSO...ONLY WATER IF RAINFALL HAS NOT BEEN
RECEIVED FOR A COUPLE OF WEEKS.

TURN OFF YOUR SPRINKLER SYSTEM WHEN RAINFALL HAS BEEN SUFFICIENT
TO AVOID WATERING WHEN IT IS NOT NEEDED. IF YOU OVER-WATER YOUR
LANDSCAPE...YOUR LAWN WILL REQUIRE MORE WATER TO MAINTAIN ITSELF.
THIS COULD RESULT IN MORE DAMAGE TO YOUR LAWN WHEN THE SUMMER
APPROACHES AND YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO WATER YOUR LAWN AS YOU WISH.

RESIDENTS WITH SPRINKLER SYSTEMS SHOULD ALSO MONITOR THEIR
WATERING TO ENSURE THEIR SYSTEM IS WATERING THE LAWN AND NOT THE
SIDEWALK OR STREET. ALSO...USE A SPRINKLER WHICH MAKES LARGER
WATER DROPLETS...AND AVOID WATERING ON WINDY DAYS. FINALLY...TURN
SOAKER HOSES SO THAT THE HOLES ARE ON THE BOTTOM...FACING THE
GRASS.

RESIDENTS SHOULD REMAIN INFORMED ON ANY WATER RESTRICTIONS WHICH
MAY BE IMPOSED FOR THEIR LOCATION...AS ANY VIOLATIONS CAN RESULT
IN SIGNIFICANT FINES. MORE INFORMATION ON HOW TO CONSERVE WATER
(AND DROUGHT CONTINGENCY PLANS) IS FOUND ON THE CITY WEBSITES
LISTED EARLIER OR AT THE END OF THIS STATEMENT.

ADDITIONAL LOCATIONS WITHIN THE HSA HAVE MAINTAINED EITHER
MANDATORY OR VOLUNTARY RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR LOCAL PUBLIC WATER
SYSTEMS (PWS). A LIST OF LOCATIONS WITHIN THE HSA WHICH HAVE
WATER RESTRICTIONS CAN BE FOUND AT:
WWW.TCEQ.TEXAS.GOV/DRINKINGWATER/TROT/LOCATION.HTML

RESIDENTS CAN ALSO CHECK WITH THEIR LOCAL OFFICIALS OR MEDIA
WHETHER WATER RESTRICTIONS FOR THEIR LOCALE HAVE BEEN
ADDED...REMOVED...OR AMENDED.


AGRICULTURAL AND SOIL MOISTURE CONDITIONS.
DUE TO THE EXCESSIVE MARCH PRECIPITATION...SOIL MOISTURE ANOMALIES
AND PERCENTILES ARE ABOVE NORMAL OVER THE ENTIRE HSA FOR THE FIRST
TIME IN YEARS. THE APRIL 1 SOIL MOISTURE ANOMALY MAP SHOWS VALUES
FROM +60 MM TO +80 MM OVER THE NORTHWESTERN PORTIONS OF THE HSA...
WITH EVEN HIGHER VALUES FARTHER SOUTH. SOIL MOISTURE PERCENTILES
ARE 80 PERCENT OR MORE. CROP MOISTURE INDICES (VALID FOR THE WEEK
ENDING MARCH 28)...SHOW ABNORMALLY MOIST (+1.0 TO +1.9) OVER ALL
OF THE HSA.

IN A RECENT ARTICLE IN AGRILIFE TODAY (LINK PROVIDED AT THE END OF
THIS STATEMENT)...AS FAR AS DROUGHT IS CONCERNED...FOR THE NEXT
20 TO 30 YEARS...STATE CLIMATOLOGIST DR. JOHN NIELSEN-GAMMON...
SAID HE IS OPTIMISTIC. ON THE NEGATIVE SIDE...GLOBAL WARMING HAS
MEANT AN AVERAGE TEMPERATURE INCREASE IN TEXAS OF ABOUT 1.5
DEGREES SINCE THE 1970S. WHILE THIS MAY NOT SEEM LIKE MUCH OF AN
INCREASE TO MOST PEOPLE...IT IS ENOUGH TO INCREASE THE
EVAPOTRANSPIRATION OF PLANTS AND LOSS OF SURFACE WATER BY SEVERAL
PERCENT. HOWEVER...DESPITE THE RISING TEMPERATURES...NIELSEN-
GAMMON REMAINED OPTIMISTIC FOR AGRICULTURE DURING THE NEXT COUPLE
OF DECADES BECAUSE OF AN EXPECTED INCREASE IN RAINFALL COMPARED TO
THE LAST 10 OR 15 YEARS. OVER THE LONG-TERM...YES...THERE WILL BE
A TREND TO GREATER EVAPORATION. BUT THEN THERE ARE ALSO SHORT-TERM
TRENDS ON TOP OF THAT LONG-TERM TREND. BASED ON HOW THE ATLANTIC
AND PACIFIC OCEANS OPERATE...AND HOW THEY INFLUENCE OUR
WEATHER...OVER THE NEXT 20 TO 25 YEARS...WE ARE PROBABLY GOING TO
SEE AN IMPROVEMENT IN DROUGHT CONDITIONS... MAINLY FROM AN
INCREASE IN RAINFALL AMOUNTS. THIS IS BECAUSE THE TWO OCEANS HAVE
BEEN WORKING AGAINST US FOR THE PAST DECADE OR DECADE AND
HALF...AND THAT TREND TENDS TO FLIP BACK AND FORTH EVERY 20 YEARS
OR SO.

IN ANOTHER ARTICLE IN AGRILIFE TODAY...WET FIELD CONDITIONS HAVE
DELAYED PLANTING OF CORN AND GRAIN SORGHUM IN MANY PARTS OF THE
STATE...ACCORDING TO A TEXAS A&M AGRILIFE EXTENSION SERVICE
AGRONOMIST. BY DELAYING CORN PLANTING...WET WEATHER COULD MEAN
MORE GRAIN SORGHUM AND COTTON WILL BE PLANTED THAN EARLIER
PREDICTED. IN MID-DECEMBER THE PRODUCERS ACROSS THE 17-STATE
COTTON BELT WERE SURVEYED TO DETERMINE THEIR COTTON PLANTING
INTENTIONS FOR THE 2015 CROP. THE REDUCTION IN INTENDED PLANTINGS
WAS THOUGHT TO BE LARGELY DUE TO SEVERAL FACTORS...INCLUDING
PROJECTED COTTON PRICES AND CHANGES IN THE RECENT U.S. FARM BILL.
BASED ON CURRENT CONDITIONS...THE LOSS IN COTTON ACRES IS EXPECTED
TO BE ABOUT 10 PERCENT...ACCORDING TO ONE EXPERT. THE MAIN REASON
FOR THE MORE STABLE COTTON ACREAGE IS HOW WET WEATHER HAS DELAYED
PLANTING OF CORN AND MAY DELAY THE PLANTING OF GRAIN SORGHUM IN
SOUTH TEXAS. BOTH CROPS NEED TO GO IN EARLIER THAN COTTON. IT IS
NOT TOO LATE TO PLANT SORGHUM. IF IT STAYS REALLY WET...AND IT
GETS TOO LATE TO PLANT SORGHUM...THEN COTTON ACRES MORE THAN
LIKELY WILL BE INCREASED. THE PRIMARY FACTOR AFFECTING THE
PLANTING DECISIONS IS THE PRICE OF CORN AND SORGHUM.

IN ANOTHER RECENT ARTICLE IN AGRI-LIFE TODAY...ALL PARTS OF THE
STATE RECEIVED MORE PRECIPITATION IN THE LAST COUPLE OF
WEEKS...FURTHER DELAYING PLANTING OF SPRING CROPS IN MANY AREAS.
ON MARCH 24...THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE RECORD OF THE LAST
SEVEN DAYS SHOWED 2 TO 3 INCHES OF RAIN WAS COMMON IN PARTS OF
EAST TEXAS...SOUTH TEXAS AND THE COASTAL BEND AREA. SOME ISOLATED
AREAS RECEIVED 5 TO 6 INCHES OR MORE. IN THE LAST 30
DAYS...ACCORDING TO THE WEATHER SERVICE...EAST TEXAS...FROM THE
RED RIVER TO THE COASTAL BEND...HAS RECEIVED FROM 10 TO 15 INCHES
OF RAIN. FROM REPORTS BY AGRILIFE EXTENSION AGENTS ACROSS THE
STATE...THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF RAIN IS NOT SO MUCH THE PROBLEM AS
LACK OF WARMER...SUNNY WEATHER TO DRY OUT FIELDS FOR PLANTING AND
TO ENCOURAGE GROWTH OF WINTER FORAGES. FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 20
YEARS...JIM WELLS COUNTY HAD A SURPLUS OF FIELD MOISTURE...WITH
STANDING WATER REPORTED IN MOST PARTS OF THE COUNTY. WIDESPREAD
RAINS OF 1 INCH TO 7 INCHES CREATED THE BEST SUBSOIL MOISTURE
LEVELS IN FOUR TO FIVE YEARS. HOWEVER...PLANTING WAS A FEW WEEKS
BEHIND SCHEDULE DUE TO THE WET CONDITIONS.

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION WAS PROVIDED BY THE TEXAS CROP AND
WEATHER REPORTS WRITTEN DURING MARCH.

FOR THE COASTAL BEND DISTRICT:

* SOIL MOISTURE WAS EXCELLENT. EXTREMELY WET CONDITIONS WERE
  CONSIDERED A BLESSING...EVEN THOUGH THEY PUSHED BACK CORN AND
  GRAIN SORGHUM PLANTING ANOTHER TWO TO FOUR WEEKS.

* CORN GROWERS WERE CONSIDERING OTHER ALTERNATE CROPS.
  HOWEVER...CORN PLANTED BEFORE THE RAINS WAS IN DECENT
  CONDITION WHERE NOT IN STANDING WATER.

* WINDY AND SUNNY DAYS WERE NEEDED TO DRY OUT FIELDS.

* GRAIN SORGHUM...COTTON AND SOYBEANS ALL HAVE EITHER PRICE OR
  PRODUCTION ISSUES...WHICH INCREASED RISK. WHAT LITTLE GRAIN
  SORGHUM THAT HAD ALREADY BEEN PLANTED WAS IN THE BEGINNING
  STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT.

* RICE FIELDWORK WAS ALSO DELAYED BY WET WEATHER.

* PASTURE AND RANGELAND CONDITIONS IMPROVED WITH THE RECENT RAINS
  AND WARMER TEMPERATURES. WARM-SEASON GRASSES WERE STARTING TO
  SHOW A LITTLE GREEN...AND THERE WERE PLENTY OF WEEDS IN MOST
  PASTURES.

* WINTER PASTURE GRAINS SUCH AS OATS...WHEAT...RYEGRASS AND
  CLOVER RESPONDED WELL TO RECENT RAINS. CATTLE REMAINED IN GOOD
  CONDITION...FINDING PLENTY OF GREEN FORAGE TO GRAZE.

* MOST LIVESTOCK STOCK TANKS WERE FULL...WHILE OTHERS REMAINED
  LOW. THE DROUGHT CAUSED SOME POND BOTTOMS TO DRY AND CRACK
  OPEN...AND IT WILL TAKE SUSTAINED RUNOFF TO SEAL THEM ENOUGH TO
  HOLD WATER.

* WHEAT CONTINUED TO MAKE PROGRESS AND WAS IN GOOD CONDITION...WITH
  LITTLE FOLIAR DISEASE OBSERVED SO FAR.

* WEATHER CONDITIONS LIMITED FIELD ACTIVITIES...BUT SOME AREAS
  RECEIVED ENOUGH SUNSHINE TO GERMINATE FIELD SANDBUR...WHICH WAS
  MORE THAN AN INCH TALL IN SOME PLACES.

* A FEW FARMERS ARE ABLE TO FERTILIZE...SPRAY FOR WEEDS AND DO
  PREPLANT FERTILIZER APPLICATIONS.


FOR THE NORTHERN PART OF THE SOUTH DISTRICT (INCLUDES LA SALLE
MCMULLEN COUNTIES):

* SOIL MOISTURE REMAINED MOSTLY ADEQUATE. WET FIELD CONDITIONS
  CONTINUED TO DELAY PLANTING...ESPECIALLY IN THE NORTHERN PARTS
  OF THE REGION.

* SOME PRODUCERS WERE PLANTING HAY. POTATOES WERE FLOWERING AND IN
  GOOD CONDITION.

* GREEN BEANS WERE BEING PLANTED AND EARLY PLANTED CORN BEGAN TO
  EMERGE.

* WINTER WHEAT HAD GROWN ABOVE AND BEYOND THE USUAL FOR
  THIS TIME OF THE YEAR. OATS WERE IN FAIR CONDITION. GRAIN
  SORGHUM PLANTING BEGAN.

* WITH WARMER TEMPERATURES...SPRING FORAGES WERE GREENING...BUT
  WINTER ANNUALS CONTINUED TO COMPETE WITH WARM-SEASON GRASSES.
  WINTER PASTURES WITH OATS WERE IN EXCELLENT CONDITION.

* SUPPLEMENTAL FEEDING OF LIVESTOCK DECLINED...AND CATTLE BODY
  CONDITION SCORES REMAINED FAIR TO GOOD...WITH MANY HERDS
  CALVING.


IN THE EASTERN PART OF THE SOUTH DISTRICT (INCLUDES DUVAL...JIM
WELLS AND KLEBERG COUNTIES):

* LIGHT RAINS COUPLED WITH SUNSHINE BOOSTED RANGELAND AND PASTURE
  GRASS GROWTH.

* FARMERS IN JIM WELLS...KLEBERG AND KENEDY COUNTIES WERE STILL
  NOT ABLE TO BEGIN PLANTING ANY ADDITIONAL ROW CROPS DUE TO
  EXCESSIVE MOISTURE IN ALL FIELDS.

* SORGHUM AND COTTON PLANTING WAS AS MUCH AS THREE WEEKS BEHIND
  SCHEDULE.

* LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS NO LONGER HAD TO PROVIDE SUPPLEMENTAL FEED
  TO CATTLE BECAUSE OF THE GOOD RANGE AND PASTURE FORAGE
  CONDITIONS.

* SOIL MOISTURE CONDITIONS WERE 40 TO 80 PERCENT SURPLUS IN DUVAL
  COUNTY...AND 100 PERCENT SURPLUS IN JIM WELLS...KLEBERG AND
  KENEDY COUNTIES.

* NOT MUCH ACREAGE WAS EXPECTED TO BE DEDICATED TO CORN AND
  SUNFLOWERS IN JIM WELLS COUNTY THIS YEAR...BUT MOST PRODUCERS
  THROUGHOUT HAVE INDICATED GOOD PROGRESS IN PLANTING THE CROPS.

* THE COOL AND DRY CONDITIONS EARLIER IN THE MONTH PROVIDED
  EXCELLENT GROWING CONDITIONS FOR ONIONS...CARROTS...SPINACH
  AND SMALL GRAINS. SPINACH AND CABBAGE WERE BEING HARVESTED.


IN THE WESTERN PART OF THE SOUTH DISTRICT (INCLUDES WEBB COUNTY):

* WINTER OATS REMAINED IN GOOD CONDITION. COASTAL BERMUDA GRASS
  WAS GOOD AND GREEN...AND CROP FARMERS WERE ACTIVELY PREPARING
  SOIL AND PURCHASING SEEDS FOR PLANTING.

* RANCHERS WERE LIGHTLY CULLING CATTLE...WITH HOPES OF BUILDING
  UP THEIR BASE HERDS...AND SUPPLEMENTAL FEEDING WAS LIGHT.

* RANGELAND AND PASTURES CONTINUED TO GREEN UP. STOCK TANKS WERE
  FILLING.

* SPINACH PRODUCERS WERE HARVESTING FRESH MARKET AND PROCESSING
  SPINACH. CABBAGE HARVESTING WAS IDLE. CABBAGE...CARROTS AND
  ONIONS PROGRESSED WELL DURING MARCH.


FIRE DANGER HAZARDS.
ACCORDING TO THE 5 DAY AVERAGE FIRE DANGER MAP FROM THE TEXAS
INTER-AGENCY COORDINATION CENTER (TICC) ON APRIL 1...THERE IS A
LOW FIRE DANGER OVER MOST OF THE NORTHERN PORTIONS OF THE HSA...WITH
A MODERATE FIRE DANGER OVER MOST OF THE SOUTHERN AREAS AND COASTAL
COUNTIES. RECENT WINDY CONDITIONS HAVE BROUGHT THE FIRE DANGER AT
TIMES TO MODERATE LEVELS DUE TO HIGHER THAN NORMAL WINDS.

ON THE OTHER HAND...FOR THE FIRST TIME IN RECENT MEMORY...KEETCH-
BYRAM DROUGHT INDICES ARE 200 OR LESS OVER THE ENTIRE HSA. THIS
OBVIOUSLY IS AN IMPROVEMENT SINCE EARLY MARCH...ALTHOUGH SEVERAL
COUNTIES IN THE HSA HAD COUNTY-AVERAGED VALUES OF 200 OR LOWER.
WITH EXPECTED ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL FOR APRIL (AND FOR THE NEXT
THREE MONTHS)...KBDI VALUES WILL LIKELY (HOPEFULLY) REMAIN LOW.


CLIMATE SUMMARY...
WITH ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL LAST MONTH AND SINCE THE BEGINNING OF
2015...DROUGHT CONDITIONS HAVE DRAMATICALLY IMPROVED OVER THE
HSA. ALSO...AVERAGE TEMPERATURES HAVE BEEN BELOW NORMAL DURING
2015. THIS IS VERY TYPICAL OF AN EL-NINO EVENT FOR SOUTH TEXAS
DURING THE COOL SEASON. RAINFALL DURING MARCH WAS 200 TO MORE THAN
400 PERCENT ABOVE NORMAL...WHILE SINCE THE BEGINNING OF
2015...ALL OF SOUTH TEXAS HAS RECEIVED AT LEAST 125 PERCENT OF
THEIR NORMAL RAINFALL. MOST OF THE EASTERN 2/3 OF THE HSA HAS
RECEIVED BETWEEN 10 AND 15 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION SINCE THE
BEGINNING OF 2015.

IN FACT...SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE WATER YEAR OCTOBER 1
2014...RAINFALL HAS BEEN ABOVE NORMAL OVER NEARLY ALL OF THE
HSA...WITH PERCENTAGES BETWEEN 110 AND 200 PERCENT ABOVE NORMAL
(WHERE ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL HAS BEEN OBSERVED). THE ONLY
EXCEPTION TO THE ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL DURING THE CURRENT WATER
YEAR IS NEAR THE RIO GRANDE (INCLUDING THE CITY OF LAREDO)...NEAR
THE VICTORIA-JACKSON COUNTY LINE...AND NEAR THE BEE-GOLIAD-KARNES
COUNTY LINE.

TYPICAL OF EL-NINO IN THE PACIFIC DURING THE COOL SEASON...
TEMPERATURES WERE BELOW NORMAL OVER THE HSA. DURING MARCH...THE
AVERAGE TEMPERATURE WAS 2.7 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL AT CORPUS
CHRISTI...1.2 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL AT VICTORIA...AND 4.8 DEGREES
BELOW NORMAL AT LAREDO. SINCE THE BEGINNING OF 2015...AVERAGE
TEMPERATURES HAVE BEEN 3.5 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL AT CORPUS
CHRISTI...2.0 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL AT VICTORIA...AND 3.7 DEGREES
BELOW NORMAL AT LAREDO.

THE FOLLOWING TABLE SHOWS THE TOTAL MONTHLY RAINFALL AMOUNTS FOR
MARCH...SO FAR FOR 2015...AND THE FOR THE 2015 WATER YEAR WHICH
BEGAN ON OCTOBER 1 2014. ALL VALUES ARE IN INCHES...RAINFALL
DEPARTURES FROM NORMAL ARE SHOWN IN PARENTHESIS:

                                                 2015 WATER YEAR
                     MARCH             2015        10/01/2014 -
                                                   03/31/2015

CORPUS CHRISTI     6.13 (+4.24)     9.58  (+4.22)  19.09 (+6.29)

VICTORIA           8.37 (+5.60)    12.42  (+5.05)  21.00 (+3.99)

LAREDO AIRPORT     2.57 (+1.45)     3.45  (+0.49)   6.40 (-0.55)

FOR THE THREE CLIMATE STATIONS...THE 2015 PERCENTAGE OF NORMAL
RAINFALL ARE: 178.7 PERCENT AT CORPUS CHRISTI...168.5 PERCENT AT
VICTORIA...AND 116.6 PERCENT AT LAREDO.

THE 2015 WATER YEAR PERCENTAGES THROUGH THE END OF MARCH 2015
ARE: 149.1 PERCENT AT CORPUS CHRISTI...123.5 PERCENT AT
VICTORIA... AND 92.1 PERCENT AT LAREDO.

WITH EL-NINO IN FULL SWING AND EXPECTED TO LAST INTO THE
SUMMER...RAIN CHANCES APPEAR FAVORABLE FOR SOUTH TEXAS. ALSO...IF
EL-NINO LASTS DURING AT LEAST PART OF THE SUMMER...THE ATLANTIC
TROPICAL SEASON WILL LIKELY BE QUIETER (AT LEAST DURING THE EL-
NINO)...AS EL-NINO EVENTS TEND TO CREATE STRONGER WINDS ALOFT AND
THUS SUPPRESS ORGANIZED TROPICAL SYSTEMS.

THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER (CPC) IS NOW FORECASTING A 50 TO 60
PERCENT CHANCE OF EL-NINO CONDITIONS CONTINUING THROUGH THE
NORTHERN HEMISPHERIC SUMMER OF 2015. THIS IS QUITE A CHANGE FROM
THE PREVIOUS MONTH...AS PREVIOUS FORECASTS HAD EL-NINO POSSIBLY
GOING ONLY INTO EARLY SPRING. THE REASON FOR THE CHANGE HAS BEEN
A GREATER INCREASE IN SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES OVER THE EQUATORIAL
PACIFIC OCEAN.

THE OCEANIC NINO INDEX (ONI) IS BASED ON SST DEPARTURES FROM
AVERAGES IN THE NINO 3.4 REGION...AND IS THE PRINCIPAL MEASURE FOR
MONITORING...ASSESSING AND PREDICTING ENSO. THE MOST RECENT ONI
VALUE (DECEMBER 2014 - FEBRUARY 2015) WAS +0.6 DEGREES CELSIUS.
THIS IS ABOVE THE +0.5 CELSIUS CRITERION FOR EL-NINO EVENTS. THIS
IS THE FOURTH THREE MONTH INTERVAL OF EL-NINO TYPE TEMPERATURES.
CONSENSUS FORECASTS THROUGH THE END OF 2015 HAVE EL-NINO
CONDITIONS MORE LIKELY THAN EITHER ENSO-NEUTRAL OR LA-NINA
CONDITIONS...WITH PROBABILITIES OF 50 PERCENT OR HIGHER.


PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOKS...
THE RAINFALL FORECAST FOR THE NEXT SEVEN DAYS (APRIL 3 THROUGH
APRIL 9) IS AS FOLLOWS. RAIN CHANCES INCREASE BY FRIDAY NIGHT...AS
A COLD FRONT MOVES INTO THE REGION AND A COASTAL TROUGH DEVELOPS.
RAIN CHANCES WILL CONTINUE THROUGH SUNDAY...APRIL 5 BEFORE THE
FRONTAL BOUNDARY MOVES BACK NORTH BY MONDAY APRIL 6. AFTER A
COUPLE OF DRY DAYS...THE NEXT CHANCE FOR RAIN WILL BE THURSDAY
APRIL 9 AS ANOTHER COLD FRONT SLOWLY APPROACHES THE AREA. AVERAGE
RAINFALL AMOUNTS THROUGH THE NEXT SEVEN DAYS ARE FORECAST TO BE
BETWEEN 1/4 AND 1/2 INCH OVER MOST OF THE HSA.

THE TEMPERATURE FORECAST FOR THE NEXT SEVEN DAYS (APRIL 3 THROUGH
APRIL 9) IS AS FOLLOWS. DAYTIME TEMPERATURES WILL BE ABOVE NORMAL
ON FRIDAY...BEFORE A COLD FRONT AND RAIN BRINGS BELOW NORMAL
TEMPERATURES ON SATURDAY. NEAR NORMAL TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED ON
SUNDAY...APRIL 5...WITH ABOVE NORMAL DAYTIME TEMPERATURES APRIL 6
THROUGH APRIL 9.

THE 8 TO 14 DAY OUTLOOK...VALID FOR THE PERIOD APRIL 10 THROUGH
APRIL 16...CALLS FOR GREATER PROBABILITIES FOR ABOVE NORMAL
TEMPERATURES AND ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION.

THE APRIL 2015 RAINFALL OUTLOOK...ISSUED ON MARCH 31...CALLS FOR
A GREATER LIKELIHOOD FOR ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL OVER THE HSA. ON
THE OTHER HAND...THE APRIL 2015 TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK CALLS FOR A
GREATER LIKELIHOOD FOR ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES OVER THE
NORTHEASTERN COASTAL BEND AND VICTORIA AREA...WITH EQUAL CHANCES
FOR NEAR/ABOVE/BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES ELSEWHERE.

WITH EL-NINO CONTINUING...THE THREE MONTH RAINFALL OUTLOOK REMAINS
PROMISING. THE THREE MONTH RAINFALL AND TEMPERATURE OUTLOOKS FOR
APRIL 2015 THROUGH JUNE 2015...ISSUED ON MARCH 19...SHOWS A
GREATER LIKELIHOOD FOR ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL AND BELOW NORMAL
TEMPERATURES (TYPICAL FOR AN EL-NINO EVENT).

THE APRIL 2015 DROUGHT OUTLOOK...ISSUED ON MARCH 31...CALLS FOR
DROUGHT CONDITIONS TO LIKELY BE REMOVED OVER THE CURRENT D1 AREAS
AND NOT SPREAD ELSEWHERE OVER THE REMAINDER OF THE HSA.

SIMILARLY...THE SEASONAL DROUGHT OUTLOOK...VALID THROUGH JUNE 30 (AND
ISSUED ON MARCH 19)...EXPECTS DROUGHT REMOVAL LIKELY OVER AREAS
IN DROUGHT (AS OF MARCH 19)...WITH NO INDICATION OF DROUGHT RE-
DEVELOPING OVER ANY OTHER PORTION OF THE HSA.

THE LAGGED SOIL MOISTURE OUTLOOK VALID THROUGH THE END OF JUNE 2015
CALLS FOR SLIGHTLY ABOVE NORMAL SOIL CONDITIONS OVER ALL OF THE
HSA (+20 MM TO +60 MM).


HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK...
HEAVY RAINFALL DURING MARCH FINALLY BROUGHT MOST RIVERS AND
CREEKS TO ABOVE NORMAL LEVELS FOR AT LEAST PART OF THE MONTH.
ALSO...HEAVY RAINFALL FINALLY FELL IN THE CORPUS CHRISTI
WATERSHED...AND JUST IN TIME TO AVOID STAGE 3 WATER RESTRICTIONS
FOR THE CITY. FOR A BRIEF TIME...THE COMBINED SYSTEM CAPACITY FOR
THE CORPUS CHRISTI RESERVOIR SYSTEM FELL TO 29.9 PERCENT...BUT
THEN ROSE TO ABOVE 30 PERCENT ONCE THE EXCESSIVE RAINFALL MOVED
INTO THE RESERVOIRS. FARTHER EAST...EXCESSIVE RAINFALL FILLED LAKE
TEXANA...WITH SLIGHTLY ABOVE NORMAL POOL LEVELS OBSERVED SINCE
THE BEGINNING OF APRIL. ALSO...COLETO CREEK IS NOW ABOVE NORMAL
POOL CAPACITY FOR THE FIRST TIME IN YEARS.

ACCORDING TO THE USGS STREAMFLOW MAP ON APRIL 2...MOST RIVERS AND
CREEKS WERE NEAR TO SLIGHTLY ABOVE NORMAL OVER THE HSA. NOTABLE
EXCEPTIONS TO THIS WAS THE FRIO RIVER AT TILDEN (WELL BELOW
NORMAL)...WITH BELOW NORMAL VALUES OBSERVED ON THE NUECES RIVER
BELOW MATHIS...SAN MIGUEL CREEK...AND COLETO CREEK. NEAR NORMAL
FLOWS WERE OBSERVED ON THE RIO GRANDE.

DUE TO THE EXCESSIVE RAINFALL...FLOWS ON THE GUADALUPE RIVER AT
VICTORIA WERE ABOVE NORMAL FOR MUCH OF MARCH...RISING TO ABOVE
CAUTION OR FLOOD STAGE FOR SEVERAL DAYS. SINCE EARLY
APRIL...LEVELS HAVE COME DOWN TO BETWEEN 6.5 FEET (742 CFS) AND
7.0 FEET (942 CFS).

WITH EXCESSIVE RAINFALL FINALLY OCCURRING IN THE WATERSHEDS...
RESERVOIR LEVELS FINALLY ROSE OVER SOUTH TEXAS RESERVOIRS DURING
MARCH. THE FOLLOWING TABLE SHOWS THE CURRENT LEVELS (AS OF APRIL
2) AND PREVIOUS LEVELS AS OF MARCH 1) AT PERTINENT SOUTH TEXAS
RESERVOIRS.


RESERVOIR      NORMAL   LATEST  PERCENT  PREVIOUS CHANGE
                POOL     POOL  CAPACITY    POOL    (FT)
CHOKE CANYON    220.5   192.3     25.1    191.7    +0.6
LAKE C. C.       94.0    87.8     58.8     85.4    +2.4
LAKE TEXANA      44.0    44.2    100.6     41.3    +2.9
COLETO CREEK     98.0    98.4      N/A     93.7    +4.4
CANYON DAM      909.0   897.9     77.8    897.6    +0.3
LAKE AMISTAD   1117.0  1088.2     62.7   1087.8    +0.4

THE COMBINED SYSTEM CAPACITY FOR THE CORPUS CHRISTI RESERVOIR
SYSTEM AS OF APRIL 2 IS AT 34.2 PERCENT...WHICH IS 4.1 PERCENTAGE
POINTS HIGHER THAN THE BEGINNING OF MARCH 2015.

TO BRING RESERVOIRS CLOSER TO NORMAL POOL LEVELS BEFORE SUMMER...
IT WILL TAKE A STALLED FRONTAL BOUNDARY OR SLOW-MOVING UPPER LEVEL
STORM SYSTEM (COMBINED WITH RICH ATMOSPHERIC MOISTURE) TO PRODUCE
HEAVY RAINFALL AND SUFFICIENT RUN-OFF (LIKELY RESULTING IN
FLOODING). WITH THE UPDATED FORECAST FOR EL-NINO TO CONTINUE
THROUGH AT LEAST SPRING (IF NOT THROUGH SUMMER)...THE CHANCES FOR
ABOVE NORMAL RAINFALL APPEAR PROMISING. HOWEVER...IT MAY WELL TAKE
A SLOW-MOVING TROPICAL SYSTEM (NOT NECESSARILY A HURRICANE) TO
BRING RESERVOIR LEVELS CLOSER TO NORMAL POOL VALUES.


NEXT ISSUANCE DATE...
THE NEXT DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT WILL BE ISSUED IN EARLY
MAY 2015.


RELATED WEB SITES...
NWS CORPUS CHRISTI DROUGHT PAGE:
HTTP://WWW.SRH.NOAA.GOV/CRP/?N=DROUGHT

ADVANCED HYDROLOGIC PREDICTION SERVICE (AHPS)...
HTTP://WATER.WEATHER.GOV/PRECIP

U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR (INCLUDES DROUGHT AND SOIL MOISTURE
OUTLOOKS...DROUGHT ARCHIVES AND TEMPERATURE/RAINFALL OUTLOOKS)...
HTTP://DROUGHT.UNL.EDU/MONITOR.HTML

U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR (INCLUDES ONLY TEXAS)...
HTTP://DROUGHT.UNL.EDU/DM_STATE.HTM?TX,S

U.S. DROUGHT PORTAL...
HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.GOV

TEXAS DROUGHT MONITORING SITE...
HTTP://WWW.TXWIN.NET/MONITORING/METEOROLOGICAL/DROUGHT/INDICES.HTM

NOAA DROUGHT PAGE...
HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.NOAA.GOV

DROUGHT IMPACT REPORTER...
HTTP://DROUGHTREPORTER.UNL.EDU/

NATIONAL DROUGHT MITIGATION CENTER...
HTTP://DROUGHT.UNL.EDU

TEXAS WATER DEVELOPMENT BOARD DROUGHT WEBSITE
HTTP://WWW.WATERDATAFORTEXAS.ORG/DROUGHT/

VEGETATION DROUGHT RESPONSE INDEX
HTTP://DROUGHT.UNL.EDU.VEGDRI/VEGDRI_MAIN.HTM?EV

CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER...
HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

WEATHER PREDICTION CENTER...
HTTP://WWW.HPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

STANDARDIZED PRECIPITATION INDEX (SPI)...
HTTP://WWW.WRCC.DRI.EDU/SPI/SPI.HTML

AGNEWS: TEXAS A & M AGRICULTURAL PROGRAM (CROP AND WEATHER REPORT)...
HTTP://TODAY.AGRILIFE.ORG

TEXAS INTERAGENCY COORDINATION CENTER (TICC)...
HTTP://WWW.TAMU.EDU/TICC/

TEXAS BURN BANS...HTTP://TFSFRP.TAMU.EDU/WILDFIRES/DECBAN.PNG

TEXAS KBDI...HTTP://WEBGIS.TAMU.EDU/TFS/KBDI_DAILY/KBDICOUNTY.PNG

TEXAS COMMISSION ON ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY (WATER RESTRICTIONS):
WWW.TCEQ.TEXAS.GOV/DRINKINATER/TROT/LOCATION.HTML

CORPUS CHRISTI WATER DEPARTMENT...
WWW.CCTEXAS.COM/GOVERNMENT/WATER

CORPUS CHRISTI WATER CONSERVATION
WWW.CCTEXAS.COM/ASSETS/DEPARTMENTS/WATER/FILES/WATERCONSERVATIONPLAN.PDF

VICTORIA WATER CONSERVATION:
WWW.VICTORIATX.ORG/PIO/PDFS/WATERSAVINGMETHODS.PDF

LAREDO WATER RESTRICTIONS AND CONSERVATION...
WWW.CI.LAREDO.TX.US/UTILITIES05/ORDINANCE/2009_ORDINANCE.PDF

CITY OF VICTORIA WEB SITE...WWW.VICTORIATX.ORG

CITY OF LAREDO WEB SITE...WWW.CI.LAREDO.TX.US

CITY OF PORTLAND WEB SITE...WWW.PORTLANDTX.COM

TEXAS CROP AND WEATHER REPORTS...WWW.TODAY.AGRILIFE.ORG

ADDITIONAL RIVER INFORMATION...
NWS...HTTP://WWW.WEATHER.GOV/AHPS/
USGS...HTTP://WATER.USGS.GOV/
IBWC...HTTP://IBWC.STATE.GOV/


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...
THE DROUGHT MONITOR IS A MULTI-AGENCY EFFORT INVOLVING THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE AND NATIONAL CLIMATIC DATA CENTER...THE USDA...STATE
AND REGIONAL CENTER CLIMATOLOGISTS AND THE NATIONAL DROUGHT
MITIGATION CENTER. INFORMATION FOR THIS STATEMENT HAS BEEN GATHERED
FROM NWS AND FAA OBSERVATION SITES...STATE COOPERATIVE EXTENSION
SERVICES...THE USDA...USACE AND USGS.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ABOUT THIS DROUGHT INFORMATION
STATEMENT...PLEASE CONTACT...
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
426 PINSON DRIVE
CORPUS CHRISTI TX 78406
PHONE: 361-289-0959
SR-CRP.WEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV

$$

GW



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