January was much warmer and drier than normal, says the Wyoming Agricultural Statistics Service.

Temperatures mostly averaged four to nine degrees above normal. Precipitation was one-tenth to four-tenths inch below normal.

Topsoil moisture supplies improved slightly during the month, but were short or very short in 76% of the state. Subsoil moisture supplies also improved, but were short or very short in 79% of the state.

Most counties reported four inches or less of snow cover, with the south and southeast having almost none.

The condition of the 2000 winter wheat crop was fair to good, with all areas requiring more moisture. Only light wind damage was reported in most areas. Light freeze damage to winter wheat was reported in a few counties.

Cattle and sheep conditions were mostly good.

Hay and roughage supplies were extended by the mild weather and were surplus in over one-third of the state, with no shortages reported.

Spring calving and farm flock lambing were just beginning, with calving 3% complete through Jan. 30 and lambing 6% complete. Farm flock sheep shearing was 9% done by month's end.

Temperatures for January were above normal. They ranged from 15 degrees above normal in Riverton to two degrees above normal in Greybull. Big Piney reported the low temperature of minus 12 degrees, while Wheatland reported the high temperature 64 degrees. Highs ranged mainly from the mid-40s to low 60s. Lows ranged mainly from minus 10 to plus 10.

Precipitation was reported across the state. Afton received over one and three-fourths inches of precipitation, while most areas received between one-fourth to three-fourths inch.

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