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Drought/Burn Bans/Fire Hazards

Burn Bans

County-wide burn bans through May 1


Monthly Change in Drought Monitor Classification

U.S. Drought Monitor, April 3, 2012
U.S. Drought Monitor, April 24, 2012

Experts warn that although we have seen an exceptionally wet winter we are not in the cleat just yet, and warn that the drought may continue and worsen over the summer.
KTRK (Houston), April 2, 2012

Estancia Lake in El Paso's upper valley is only a handful of puddles and dead fish as the drought has taken it's toll on the lake.
KTSM (El Paso), April 3, 2012

For the first time since November 2010 parts of Central Texas have been removed from the drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.
KXAN (Austin), Jim Spencer, April5, 2012

The U.S. Drought monitor has released Houston from the grips of drought for the first time since February 2011. 
KUHF (Houston), Jack Williams, April 5, 2012

The borderland is suffering from the worst drought in 40 years and the recent release of water from the Caballo Dam is not enough to ease the burden on farmers.
KFOX (El Paso), Ric Dupont, April 6, 2012

The drought is officially over for Smith county bringing relief to many residents.
KETK (Tyler), Casey Claiborne, April 17, 2012

Stage 2 drought restrictions have been approved for San Angelo as the city only has 18 months of water left.
San Angelo Standard-Times, Matthew Waller, April 17, 2012

Governor Rick Perry renewed the Drought Disaster Declaration on Friday due to the continuance of the drought across many parts of Texas.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram, April 20, 2012

The drought in the Big Bend came with a double whammy of a hard freeze in February 2011 killing off even hardy desert plants.
San Antionio Express-News, John MacCormack, April 29, 2012


Experts say that all of the rain that East Texas has received recently will drop the probability of devastating forest fires like the prior year.
KTRK (Houston), April 15, 2012

One year after the devastating Bastrop wildfire destroyed Bastrop State Park, the park will reopen to the public. This is due partly to the charitable donations of the public as well as the dedication of park personnel.
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, Enrique Rangel, April 20, 2012

Water Supply

The water level in Lake Conroe has increased by 5 feet since the beginning of the year, but with a booming population and droughts expected in the future a water contingency plan must be put into effect.
Houston Chronicle, Racheal Gleason, April 3, 2012

The Blanco county groundwater conservation district has removed groundwater restrictions on the region as the drought has improved.
Hill Country Current, April 4, 2012

The city of Kyle has lifted water restrictions as the Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer Conservation District says that the area is no longer in drought.
Hays Free Press, Kim HIlsenbeck, April 5, 2012

The Texas Center for Environmental Quality released a statement that said that all junior water rights holders on the Neches River will be allowed to divert water now that the drought has diminished.
Lufkin News, Steve Knight, April 8, 2012

The city of Lubbock has handed out more tickets due to water restrictions in the past week than it did in the last year due to the increase in water restrictions to stage 2.
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, Tommy Magelssen, April 9, 2012

The drought has tensions high on the U.S.-Mexico border as farmers on both sides need water. The International Boundary and Water Commission ordered an early release of water from U.S. dams to appease Mexican Farmers, months earlier than Texans requested.
Houston Chronicle, Christopher Sherman, April 16, 2012

Due to new water resource planning the water level in Lake Travis will not drop below 630 feet this summer even in extreme drought conditions. This is due to the limitations of water being used for agricultural purposes downstream.
Austin American-Statesman, Farzad Mashhood, April 19, 2012

Tom Miller Dam released water for environmental reasons on Wednsday, but TCEQ officials say that the water shed still remains at 50% the normal level and the drought is not over yet.
KXAN (Austin), Natalie Stoll, April 25, 2012


Agricultural Impacts

The drought has farmers all over Texas thinking of new ways to conserve resources. Steve Olsen of Plainview decided to keep old stalks with the new seed and use sensor irrigation to reduce soil moisture loss.
Plainview Herald, Jessica Thorton, April 5, 2012

The years drought has caused many farmers to leave the farming business because times have been so tough.
KUT (Austin), Mose Buchele, April 6, 2012

The rainfall and the warm temperatures have boosted many crops and allowed early growth of forage in fields for cattle to graze on, according to the AgriLife extension office.
Wichita Falls Times Record News, April 7, 2012

Strong storms that moved through Hill County damaged crops with hail and high winds.
Hillsboro Reporter, April 7, 2012

With the drought hurting ranchers across the state many sold off cattle and turned to raising sheep, which are cheaper to maintain.
KYTX (Tyler), Bobbie Terry, April 11, 2012

Dairy Cows may already be suffering from heat stress due to the higher than average spring temperatures.
Country World, Mindy Riffle, April 17, 2012

The Teas AgriLife Extension Office says to exersize caution when restoking herds now that the region is out of drought.
Liberty County Vindicator, Blair Fannin, April 21, 2012


Inclement Weather


Slow moving storms moved though the DFW area on Easter Sunday breaking the rainfall record for the day in many locations. The National Weather Service in Fort Worth received 2.22 inches of rain and issued flood warnings for Dallas, Tarrant, and Denton Counties.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Domingo Ramirez Jr., April 8, 2012

Turner Falls Park had to be evacuated due to flooding over Easter weekend as over 5 inches of rain fell in a short period of time.
KTEN News, Shannon McConnathy, April 9, 2012

Severe Storms

Strong winds tore through a Beaumont neighborhood early in the morning and knocked down trees and overturned lawn furniture, many residents thought that this was a tornado.
KFDM News, Megan Dillard, April 2, 2012

A total of 1,100 buildings were damaged by a hailstorm that hammered McAllen on Thursday. The storm caused extensive damage with baseball sized hail.
The Brownsville Herald, The Monitor, April 3, 2012

Severe Storms swept through southeast Texas bringing heavy rains, hail, and strong winds. Alvin, Texas was hit hard enough to down trees in the wind and with baseball sized hail.
ABC13 News, Andy Cerota, April 4, 2012

A widespread outbreak of Severe weather hit the Metroplex on Tuesday with several tornado touchdowns including an EF3 in Forney and an EF2 in Arlington and Lancaster. Significant damage is reported due to the tornadoes and hundreds of flights were canceled out of both DFW and Dallas Love Field Airports.
The Houston Chronicle, AP, April 4, 2012

Three tornadoes touched down in Sterling County on Saturday, which were accompanied by nearly 4 inches of rain and golf ball sized hail.
San Angelo Standard Times, Denise Morris, April 8, 2012

Strong storms moved through the Coastal Bend on Friday dumping several inches of rain in many areas and the issuing of a Tornado Warning for Corpus Christi.
Corpus Christi Caller, Steven Alford, April 20, 2012


The city of El Paso may have to move recycling day to the following week due to high winds and the poosibility of sending too much trash into the streets.
NBC 9 News, Bianca Cervantes, April 25, 2012

The National Weather Service reported that visibilities due to blowing dust were limited to less than a quarter of a mile between Brownsville and Port Isabel. 
The Brownsville Herald, Laura B. Martinez, April 27, 2012


West Texas saw record temperatures today with Lubbock setting the all time high temperature for the month of April by topping out at 104 degrees.
CBS 11 News, Larry Mowry, April 25, 2012


Other Climate Impacts


Plano ISD says that it will come up with a better severe weather service plan in the wake of the chaos of last week’s storms.
WFAA News, Steve Stoler, April 13, 2012

Animals/ Aquatic Life

The drought and high heat along with disease have severely damaged honey bee colonies in Texas this past year. 
The Schulenburg Sticker, Andy Behlen, April 4, 2012

Lack of water and food has forced many wild animals to move closer into neighborhoods win order to search for food.
NBC 9 News, April 10, 2012

As the rains have fallen in Cameron County the habitat for butterflies has improved enough to give them a remarkable comeback after last years drought.
The Monitor, Ryan Henry, April 22, 2012

The drought caused Animal Care Services to pick up more livestock last year than in the past three years combined, and they warn that as stage 2 drought restrictions are put in place they may run out of room for animals.
WOAI News, Emily Baucum, April 30, 2012


Body shops are booming after big storms caused massive hail damage to many cars in the Metroplex earlier in the week.
NBC5 News, Christine Lee, April 5, 2012

Hay prices have reached new heights as the drought made it difficult to grow the crop and the demand remained the same for feeding of cattle. The recent rains have increased production levels of fields and thus the price of hay is expected to drop.
KCEN News, Amanda Kenney, April 10, 2012

The sound of hail outside is also a call to insurance companies, especially in Dumas where Golf ball to Baseball sized hail fell on Sunday night.
ProNews 7, Betsy Goldin, April 30, 2012

Homes/Gardening/ Trees

Due to 2011's record drought THe Woodlands was forced to increase it's tree removal budget by $1.88 million in order to dispose properly of thousands of trees that died in the drought.
The Houston Chronicle, Lindsay Peyton, April 3, 2012

Trees are now beginning to make a comeback now that rains have fallen, but this makes it all the more obvious which trees did not survive the drought.
The Eagle, April 8, 2012

The drought has claimed thousands of trees across the Houston area, but Brazoria county has been spared of the worst due to irrigation and clay-like soils.
The Houston Chronicle, Mark A. Quick, April 10, 2012

A gardening seminar will be held at the Grayson County Courthouse to discuss better was to plant in times of severe drought.
North Texas e-News, Texas AgriLife Extension Service, April 12, 2012

The terrible drought of last year tested many gardeners, but placed Jerusalem Sage in a new category for drought resistance.
Hays Free Press, Chris Winslow, April 19, 2012


The district 8-5A golf championship tournament was postponed due to dangerous weather.
Star Local News, Kevin Hageland, April 3, 2012

The Refugio and Bishop Baseball Teams games were rained out and postposed until Thursday as severe storms moved across the area.
Corpus Christi Caller, Matt Young, April 20, 2012


Heavy rain and hail shut down roads and highways in the Panhandle as a slow moving storm dropped upwards of 4 inches of rain and 3 feet of hail. Highway 287 and 136 were such that were closed by the storm.
ProNews 7, Travis Ruiz, April 11, 2012

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