Flooding, Flooding And More Flooding

It’s been in the news, but it bears repeating – flooding and the potential for more are threatening or damaging roads, bridges, farms, homes and whole towns in the Central and Northern Plains and western Midwest.

Sonja Begemann, Farm Journal seeds and crop production editor, penned a story for AgWeb that lays out the threat potential very well.

Social media also is replete with photos of flooded interstate highways, Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Neb., and farms, including stranded cattle.  Such images, however, do not seem to be making it to the national headlines in anything more than a cursory nod.

The snowpack in northcentral states is beginning to melt, and with the ground being frozen, the moisture will not soak in as well as might be hoped.  The only alternative is for the water to flow downhill.

But there isn’t enough room for that, and flooding ensues.

The good part is that melting up north is being done slowly, allowing more time for snow and ice in central states to dissipate.  The problem is there has been just too much snow, ice and rain in the last couple of weeks, and flooding is the result.

Major to historic river flooding is expected to continue across parts of the Missouri and Mississippi River Basins due to rapid snow melt the past few days, the NWS said.  Flood warnings and advisories remain in effect, mainly across eastern Nebraska and into parts of Iowa.

Flooding is also a concern across parts of the Northern Great Basin into the Northern/Central Rockies as warmer-than-average temperatures lead to accelerated snow melt for lower elevations.




The National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center said, “major to historic flooding will continue across parts of the Mississippi and Missouri River Basins.”  And, “Warm temperatures and snow melt may lead to areal flooding across portions of the Northwest and Northern/Central Rockies.”

Light rain or snow is possible by Tuesday from parts of the central/southern Plains into the mid-Mississippi Valley, the NWS said.  Increased precipitation chances out west by Wednesday as a cold front approaches California, also are possible, as this NWS map shows.

The good thing is that the NWS sees most locations from the Rockies eastward will be dominated by surface high pressure, which will keep temperatures near or below normal for this time of year.

“The greatest departures from normal (10 to 20 degrees) are forecast across parts of the southern Plains as well as the Appalachians into the East,” the NWS said.

However, the US Army Corps of Engineers is releasing more water into the Missouri River by opening Gavins Point Dam at Yankton, S.D., to relieve pressure from upstream flows.




Cash cattle trade took place last week at $125 to $128.50 per cwt on a live basis, mostly $126 to $128, steady to down $2 from the previous week, and at $202 to $206 dressed, mostly $203 to $204, down $1.

The USDA choice cutout Monday was up $1.34 per cwt at $228.33, while select was up $0.87 at $218.21.  The choice/select spread widened to $10.12 from $9.65 with 51 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.

The CME Feeder Cattle index for the seven days ended Friday, was $137.50 per cwt, down $0.1574.  This compares with Monday’s Mar contract settlement of $141.65, up $0.32.