Farmers Looking for a Better Harvest

September warm, dry in Illinois

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) -- Precipitation was below average and temperatures were above average across Illinois during September.

   Jim Angel is the state climatologist with the Illinois State Water Survey. He says precipitation for September was 1.87 inches, 1.39 inches below average. Angel says it was the 14th driest September on record and the third month in a row with below-average precipitation.

   The statewide temperature for September was 68.8 degrees, about 3 degree above average.

   Angel says the beginning of October was "very summer like." He says temperatures were 9 degrees above average. But he says a Sunday cold front "finally brought temperatures more in line with October."

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- This weeks nice weather will allow farmers to get back in the fields harvesting corn and soybeans. After last years devastating drought, local farmer Gary Shedd is hoping for better numbers.

The cool and wet spring delayed a lot of fields from getting planted on time. This has caused the yield to be below average, but still significantly better over last year. Farmers can make up some of that loss with insurance and hope to make up the rest with above normal quality.

"We are getting into an average year but we are still down about 25 percent from a normal year thanks to the dry July we had on our corn crop.The grain quality has improved at this time with recent heat and everything so i am optimistic with the potential in this crop," Shedd said.

Harvesting will continue through October.

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