Drought session Tuesday in Minden
April 29, 2014
Well-below average snow pack means limited irrigation water for agriculture operations in Carson Valley will be the topic of an Agriculture Innovation Forum, 6 p.m. Tuesday at the CVIC Hall in Minden, Forage and Alternative Crops Specialist Jay Davison, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, will discuss recommended irrigation practices for alfalfa-grass hays under conditions of limited water.
Douglas County Weed Control Coordinator Jeff Begovich will talk about how weed problems this spring compares to more normal moisture years and how weeds can be best managed. Begovich will also review the many services the weed department offers and how to get the most from these services.
The series is held at the CVIC Hall, 1604 Esmeralda Ave., Minden, 6-8 p.m. For more information on the April 29 forum on drought considerations for alfalfa-grass hays and weed control, contact Extension Educator Steve Lewis with the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension at 782-9960.
A couple of spring storms bought the Carson River Basin an extra week of water after more than a foot of snow fell at Ebbetts Pass.
According to Natural Resources Conservation Service snow telemetry, the amount of water contained in snow at the top of the East Fork of the Carson River is 10.3 inches as of midnight Sunday, slightly more than was there on April 20.
Sensors recorded 13 inches of snow during a 24-hour period between Friday and Saturday. The amount of water in the snow at Ebbetts Pass peaked at 17.7 inches on April 6 before starting to melt off.
Blue Lakes, at the top of the West Fork, received 8 inches of snow over the weekend bringing its snow water equivalent up to 12. 9 inches, higher than it was on April 19. It peaked at 17.7 inches on April 7. Blue Lakes should have been at twice that amount at the end of March. Ebbetts Pass should have exceeded that amount by more than twice.
Spring flows on the East Fork near Gardnerville were down to 77 percent of its average 707 cubic feet per second on April 22. Flows on the West Fork at Woodfords were down to 150 cfs, or 59 percent of average.
The April drought statement issued by the National Weather Service and the Conservation Service pointed out that Douglas County is included among the driest areas in the West, with extreme drought affecting portions of the county.
The Carson Water Subconservancy District reported many ranchers plan to pump more ground water this season, which may affect the ground water levels by the end of the irrigation season.
Drought conditions have prompted fish stocking in streams and lakes of Western Nevada earlier than has been done in the last 20 yers, according to the Nevada Department of Wildlife.
Fire danger through Western Nevada will remain average through May, with above average fire danger for June and July.