B.C. forest fires threaten cattle

A provincial state of emergency has been declared in British Columbia, where more than 200 forest fires are raging. About 10,000 people have been evacuated and emergency plans are underway to protect livestock. “There are a lot of cattle and a lot of range that we know is being affected. We know that we have […] Read more

Sask. crops progressing, but dryness an issue

Dry conditions are becoming more widespread in Saskatchewan, especially in the southern part of the province where there has been little rain. According the Saskatchewan Agriculture crop report for the week ended July 3, topsoil moisture province-wide on cropland is rated as five percent surplus, 49 percent adequate, 37 percent short and nine percent very […] Read more

Canola suffers in northern U.S. drought

It’s been incredibly dry in southwestern North Dakota this year. The area is so parched that locals can cite the last time it rained. “Right in our region, around Hettinger … we had our last significant rain in April,” said John Rickertsen, a North Dakota State University extension agronomist in Hettinger, 20 kilometres from the […] Read more

Alberta crop conditions above average, but declining

The overall crop condition rating in Alberta fell four percentage points from the previous week during the week ended June 27, with 78 percent now rated at good to excellent, according to the latest provincial crop report from Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, released June 30. That compares to the five-year average of 73 percent for […] Read more

New hail modelling system draws mixed reviews from insurers

A new hail risk modelling system is available for Canadian crop insurers, but providers are divided over its value. AIR Worldwide recently developed the industry’s first probabilistic computer model designed to better assess hail risk in Canada. Ken Doleman, chief executive officer at Palliser Insurance, said the additional data from the AIR model will provide […] Read more

Rain on its way but dry fall to come: forecaster

REGINA — World Weather Inc.’s Drew Lerner predicts a slightly wetter bias for much of the Prairies in July, followed by a warmer and drier than normal fall. Lerner provided his summer-to-fall forecast to a crowd of hundreds at Canada’s Farm Progress Show in Regina last week. He said two flow patterns are driving prairie […] Read more

Windy spring blows in trouble

Unusually strong and persistent winds are wreaking havoc on farms across the Prairies this growing season. Last week a line of strong thunderstorms that formed in the northern foothills of Alberta swept across the southern part of the province and into Saskatchewan, leaving behind a trail of demolition. Wind gusts were recorded as high as […] Read more

Letters to the editor – June 29, 2017

Climate change Interestingly, climate change, global warming, carbon pollution and taxation have dominated worldwide communication. Firstly, we must acknowledge the fact that nature provided planet Earth with a four-season year, (less taxes) spring, summer, autumn and winter. Spring planting, summer growing, autumn harvest and winter mostly sports. Greed politics and taxation have now entered the […] Read more

Rain too late for U.S. spring wheat

The U.S. spring wheat crop is still in trouble despite recent rainfall. Jim Peterson, marketing director of the North Dakota Wheat Commission, said the rain came too late for much of the crop in South Dakota, North Dakota and Montana. “You can’t call it a timely rain because a week sooner certainly would have been […] Read more

Australian state has ‘desperately dry’ weather

An emerging drought in Western Australia could reduce wheat and canola production in that state. The western portion of the state has experienced “serious and severe rainfall deficiencies” during the fall months of March to May, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Large portions of the state have received rain that is in the […] Read more