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Many farmers’ fields submerged

Dec. 1, 2011 -According to a summary by Weather INnovations Incorporated, based in Chatham, Ontario, much of the extreme southwestern part of the province has endured record amounts of precipitation, both during the month of November as well as for the whole of 2011.


December 1, 2011
By Weather INnovations Incorporated

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Dec. 1, 2011 –Farmers in southwestern Ontario continue to face Mother Nature’s wrath this year. Continuous, intense rain between November 28th and 29th caused extensive flooding, leaving hundreds of acres across the region under water.

Chris Snip, Crop Specialist with AGRIS Co-operative, worries the massive amounts of water could wreak havoc on recently-planted winter wheat. "With so much of the soil saturated, a lot of the seeds and plants may rot," he said. "Some farmers have written off entire fields already, there’s so much water laying on them."

Rainfall totals were between 40 to 80 mm in most areas, according to Weather INnovations Inc., which maintains a network of weather monitoring stations in farmers’ fields throughout Ontario. Among the hardest hit locations were Tupperville (103 mm), Kingsville (91 mm) and Kent Bridge (87 mm). Weather INnovations has created a GIS-enhanced map illustrating the rainfall picture across the southwest of the province, available at www.weatherinnovations.com.

Environment Canada meteorologist Geoff Coulson indicated precipitation records were broken in several cities and towns. "Windsor received 75 mm on November 29th alone," he said, "the wettest day not just for that date but for any single day in the month of November ever. This is now also the rainiest year ever for Windsor – over 1,350 mm with a month still to go." The previous yearly record for rain in Windsor was in 1990, with 1,121 mm total accumulation. Daily rainfall records for November 29th were also set in Ridgetown, London, Sarnia and Delhi, with 62, 54, 51 and 43 mm respectively.

"It’s really adding insult to injury," Coulson said, pointing out the several tumultuous wet periods farmers have already endured this year.

Growers that still have corn in their fields are concerned, said Snip. With about 30 percent of the harvest remaining in West Essex, for instance, many stalks are lodging and cobs are on the ground.

"With all the moisture, if everything freezes they’ll be stuck there," said Snip. "And every day that the harvest gets pushed, it’s facilitating stalk rot and reducing the quality of the corn." Rainfall Totals (mm) Nov. 28 – 29

Rainfall Totals (mm) Nov. 28 – 29

Beamsville

36.4

Ridgetown

62.4

Blenheim

81.4

Sarnia

50.8

Brantford

39.2

Simcoe

47.4

Brussels

37.4

St. Catharines

43.2

Chatham

79.2

Stoney Point

77.8

Colchester

71.4

Tupperville

102.8

Dresden

88.6

Vineland

41

Exeter

49

Wallaceburg

76.6

Ilderton

73.5

Warwick

69.8

Kent Bridge

86.6

Waterloo

45

Kingsville

91.4

Welland

26

Leamington

78.4

West Lorne

70

London

60.5

Wheatley

76

Niagara Falls

27.2

Windsor

86

Orangeville

42.2

Woodstock

42.8