0206MTcropreportMRko.cfm Temps fluctuate during January
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Temps fluctuate during January

Montana

Montana saw unseasonably warm days and frigid nights for most of the month of January with temperatures that fluctuated from below zero and to mid 60s, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Montana Field Office, Feb. 6.

The average low temperature was in the mid 20s to lower 30s at most reporting stations. Superior received the highest amount of precipitation for the month with 3.62 inches of moisture. Outside the Northwest region, stations received at 0.01 of an inch to 1.53 inches of moisture in January. High temperatures were in the upper 40s and mid 60s, with Hardin, Huntley, and Valentine all reaching 66 degrees. A majority of stations reported lows below 0 degrees, the coldest being Goldbutte at -33 degrees, followed by Opheim and Turner with -28 degrees in January.

The weather outlook for Feb. 6 through 12 is for above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation on both east and west sides of the Great Divide. Normal temperatures for this period in Montana are highs in the upper 20s to upper 30s, with lows 5 to 20 degrees.

Topsoil moisture adequate and surplus is 54 percent compared with 91 percent last year. Subsoil moisture also declined with 53 percent adequate and surplus compared to 82 percent last year.

Winter wheat condition is rated 26 percent good to excellent, compared to 72 percent good to excellent from last January as warm but windy periods were offset by periods of heavy snow and subzero temperatures, often in the same week. Wind damage increased to 28 percent moderate to heavy, up from last month's 5 percent and last year's 1 percent.

Grazing conditions are 86 percent open so far this winter, far above last year's 46 percent. Heavy snow and freezing conditions increased the need to provide supplemental feed from last month to 87 percent of cattle and 88 percent of sheep. Livestock birthing has begun nearly on pace with last year with 3 percent calving completed and 1 percent lambing completed.



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