Average temperatures were slightly below normal for the week ended March 7, and included a significant warm-up on the weekend, according to the Colorado Agricultural Statistics Service, March 9.
Limited moisture was received along the Front Range and Eastern Plains from a mid-week snow storm. Recent moisture received has been spotty at best. Topsoil and subsoil moisture levels remain very low. Topsoil moisture supplies are rated at 28 percent very short, 38 percent short, 31 percent adequate and 3 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies are rated at 44 percent very short, 36 percent short, 17 percent adequate and 3 percent surplus. Producers were able to average 3.3 days suitable for fieldwork.
Winter Wheat acreage being pastured was at 4 percent of planted compared with 5 percent at this time last year. Lack of moisture during the fall and winter is responsible for winter wheat's condition being rated in very poor to poor condition. Barley was 7 percent planted, up from 3 percent last year and 1 percent on average. Dry onions were 7 percent planted by week's end, ahead of the pace attained last year at 1 percent and 5 percent on average.
Overall pasture and range feed condition was rated at 33 percent very poor, 28 percent poor, 27 percent fair, and 12 percent good. The condition ratings are a slight improvement over last year at this time, but are still below the average which reflects the dry conditions throughout the state. The mild and dry conditions have been favorable for calving, which at 32 percent complete, was on the average pace as with lambing at 23 percent. Both cattle and sheep death losses have been slightly below average so far this year. Stored feed supplies were rated short.