Saturday, August 20, 2011

Hot Hot Hot

Yes - we continue to experience record breaking temperatures and drought.  I know I've posted several times about our weather, but I along with many others are just surprised that the pattern continues with no real break seen in the future.  Just to give you an idea:

August 21 - August 29  our temperatures will range in the upper 90s - mostly 99 & 98 and mid to upper 70s for the night, but we do have a few chances of rain - only 30% (better than the 0% we see most days).  In fact today we had 3 alerts:  1 heat advisory & 2 air quality alerts - crazy stuff.
Our historical averages for these same dates are lower 90s (would feel chilly) during the day and lower 70s for night (wow winter). 
The .07 inches of rain we've received so far this month hasn't added much to our total rainfall (historical average 3.84 inches for August).

September - our historical average temperatures should range in the mid to high 80s for day and right at 70 degrees for nighttime.  September is also our big rain month - averaging 7.12 inches -- which coincides with our most active time of hurricane season.

We continue to have high pressure over our region that does bring us beautifully clear days, but the combination of the heat and dryness/drought only make our temperatures stay high.  Sadly most everyone in the area hopes for a tropical storm or even category 1 hurricane, just for the rain. Unfortunately these high pressure systems also steer all rain-bearing tropical systems away.  Trees are dying, farmers are selling off their cattle because there isn't always hay available to feed them. 

I recently drove to a local state park where the drought is even more evident - their marshes/ponds have become puddles, the birds for the most part have left, there are only a few insects (mostly robber flies), nothing like you'd expect to see.  The park staff said it could take a few years for the birds to return in full force as well as the insects.  Their trees are also stressed & turning brown, and although they expect to lose a few oaks, most of the trees are expected to survive.  They gave no prediction how long it would take for the park to recover as a whole - refilling marshes & ponds, etc. 

I've posted a picture of a ladybug (lady beetle - which ever you call them) because this is something we haven't seen this year.  Nothing green for the aphids to eat, no aphids, no ladybugs.  We usually have a colony in our backyard during the summer & we enjoy watching their life cycle, but we haven't seen anything (not even mosquitoes).  I just hope we get some relief - real relief, not just enough rain to make mud & a mess, but some to make a dent in our deficit.

Interestingly there are madatory water restrictions going into place in many cities that addresses water usage during certain times.  We don't usually water our yard (cost too much), but we have had to water our house -- waiting for the ground under the house to crack open wide enough to swallow our house or at least our foundation.  So far so good, but we need help fast.

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