May 2017 Met Central - A second Cool Month in a Row

While May started out running a little warmer than normal,
there were
periods throughout the month when temperatures ran well below normal
as well and ended the month with a cool stretch of days There have
been some years when there have been century breaking temperatures as
early as the 18th of May but this year there were only 3 days that had
high temperatures exceeding the 90 degree F mark. There were actually
3 days that set new daily low temperature records. As in April the
mean daily high, mean daily low and mean daily average all ran well
below average.

    May Record Temperatures - High 39.2 (102.6 F), Low -7.5 (18.5 F)
    May '17 Record Temperatures - High 33.7 (92.6 F), Low -2.9 (30.0 F)

Most of the May moisture on the Sevilleta came on the 10th and 16th.
Small shots of moisture at various gauges across the refuge on the
last 4 days of the month added very little but brought the final
average total for May to 8.0 mm - long term average for the refuge is
13.3 mm. Precipitation across the refuge was quite variable with the
field station getting the least - 1.9 mm.

May Meteorological Summary

                       May                May '17          May '17
Variable             Long-term* Mean    Mean           Mean Range
Mean Max Temp (C)         27.45           26.3         23.6 - 27.3
Mean Min Temp (C)          9.96            8.5          5.7 - 10.5
Mean Average Temp (C)     18.70           17.4         15.1 - 18.9
Mean R.H. (%)             27.2            27.9         26.2 - 28.9
Mean Vap Press. (mb)       5.38            5.17        5.06 - 5.28
Mean Max Wind (m/sec)     12.1            12.1         10.7 - 12.4
Mean Solar Rad. (kWh/m2)   7.94            8.37        8.05 - 9.01
Precip.(mm)                13.3            8.0          1.9 - 20.8
*Long-term refers to all of the Sevilleta met stations for 1989-2016

Albuquerque - Sevilleta Comparison

Albuquerque's airport gauge only got about 3/4 as much precipitation
as did the average for the Sev and half of its expected May total.
Albuquerque is now running slightly above to its year to date
norm. Sev is running almost one and a half times its YTD normal

               Loc         Precip          Normal         % of Normal
May      	ABQ        6.1 mm         12.7 mm            48 %
                SEV        8.0 mm         13.3 mm            59 %

Year to Date    ABQ        66.3 mm        64.5 mm           103 %
                SEV        75.6 mm        53.6 mm           141 %
Remember to check National Weather Service Monthly highlights at:

Water-year Precipitation

So this completes the non-monsoon portion of the water-year. The Sev
ended up as the 6th wettest in our 1989-2017 record. This is actually
just about what is expected for an El Nino year... except that this
was a weak la Nina year??

     Water Year Precipitation (mm)

Month           Mean            2016-2017    
Oct             22.2               5.1       
Nov             11.2              45.1
Dec		14.1		  23.1
Jan              8.0		  33.9
Feb 		 7.5		  10.0
Mar		12.9		   9.4
Apr		11.9		  15.8
May		13.3		   8.0
               101.1		  150.4   


At the end of May, the U.S. Drought Monitor is classifying much of the southern half of NM as "abnormally dry"
and the boot-heel region of the state as under moderate drought.

The PalmerDrought Index
paints a different story with more of southwestern NM considered
under moderate drought and the Central Valley actually qualified as under extreme drought.


Currently it seems to be a coin-toss as to whether we end up with El
Nino by end of the year. The Sea Surface Temperature anomaly for the
key 3.4 Nino zone is at +0.6. The Ocean Nino Index (ONI) for the
March-April May period was +0.4

The Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) continues to be undecided going from
-0.2 in April to +.03 in May The 5-month running mean held steady at

June Forecast


As we enter the monsoon time of the year, June is predicted to be
warmer than normal for much of the state while for precipitation the
odds for above or below are equal statewide.

For the June, July, August period NOAA is predicting warmer than normal
temperatures for the entire state while the northeast portion of the state is
predicted to have increased chances of above normal precipitation.


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