Monthly Water Resource Summary

March, 2018

Precipitation

For March 2018, Indiana's precipitation was generally above normal, with average temperature below normal. The statewide monthly precipitation average was 118.9 percent of normal. The overall monthly temperature average for Indiana was 38.0 degrees Fahrenheit or 2.7 degrees below normal.

Seven of the nine climate divisions received much above normal precipitation for the month of March. The southwestern climate division received the highest (140.3) percentage of normal precipitation for the month, while the northwestern climate division received the lowest (66.5) percentage.

For the 2018 water year, which began October 1, 2017, total precipitation is above normal for all of the nine climate divisions (108.9% to 141.8% percent of normal). Beginning January 2017, all nine climate divisions have received above normal precipitation. These range from 104.8 percent in the southwestern division to 123.7 percent for the northwestern division.

The Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) long-term 12-month indices shows the northwestern, the north-central, northeastern, central, and southeastern climate divisions in the "very wet" category; the east-central and the south-central climate divisions in the "moderately wet" category; and the west-central and southwestern climate divisions in the "near normal" category.   The SPI for the 6-month indices shows the northwestern climate division in the "extremely wet" category; the north-central climate division in the "very wet" category; the central, the southwestern, the south-central and southeastern climate divisions in the "moderately wet" category; and the remaining climate divisions in the "near normal" category.  The SPI for the 3-month indices shows the northwestern and the southwestern climate divisions in the "very wet" category; the north-central, the central, and the south-central climate divisions in the "moderately wet" category; and the remaining climate divisions in the "near normal" category.  The SPI for the 1-month indices shows all of the nine climate divisions are in the "near normal" category.

U. S. Drought Monitor

For the period ending March 27, 2018, the U.S. Drought Monitor shows no drought conditions.  The U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook predicts no drought conditions for the state through the end of June 2018.

Streamflow

Of the twelve streams included in drought reporting since 1999, ten had stream flows above to well above normal.  The Kankakee River at Shelby had the highest mean monthly flow at 205%; and the St. Mary's River a Decatur had the lowest mean monthly flow at 80%.

Detailed Information on Streamflow

Lake Michigan

The Lake Michigan-Huron water level for March 30, 2018 was eight inches above the measurement taken on March 30, 2017, and one inch below the measurement reported on March 2, 2018.  On March 28, 2018 the Michigan-Huron level was 579.88 feet, which is approximately 46 inches above the lowest recorded monthly mean level for March set in 1964. Comparison of March monthly mean water levels to the long-term (1918-present) average shows Lakes Michigan-Huron water levels were slightly greater than 18 inches above the average. All Lake Michigan-Huron data are referenced to the International Great Lakes Datum 1985.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers predicts the Lake Michigan-Huron water level to rise about four inches over the next month.

Reservoirs

On April 1, 2018, the water levels for all eight Indiana reservoirs being monitored by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers were above normal pool elevation. The deviation from normal pools ranged from 3.3 feet above (Brookville) to 25.2 feet above (Cagles Mill).

The water levels of all three reservoirs monitored by Citizens Energy Group (Morse, Geist and Eagle) were above their respective normal pool elevations on April 1, 2018.  Deviation from normal pools ranged from 0.23 feet above (Eagle Creek) to 0.68 feet above (Geist).

Groundwater Levels

As of April 1, 2018 new water level data was available for eight of the nine wells currently monitored.  Of the eight wells monitored, data indicate the groundwater levels for La Porte 9, LaGrange 2, Vigo 7, Randolph 3, Posey 3, Harrison 8 and Clark 20 are above normal for their respective mean monthly level.  The mean monthly groundwater level is near to slightly below normal Fulton 7 and Morgan 4. 

Real-time data are available for all nine observation wells. The real-time information may be accessed on the following U.S. Geological Survey website: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/in/nwis/current/?type=gw

Acknowledgments
This report has been compiled from Division of Water data and from information supplied by the following:

Precipitation data:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Weather Service, Midwestern Regional Climate Center

Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI):
National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC) and Western Regional Climate Center (WRCC)

Streamflow:
U.S. Geological Survey and State of Indiana cooperative program

Lake Michigan level data:
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District

Reservoir data:
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Louisville District

Groundwater level data:
U.S. Geological Survey and State of Indiana cooperative program

Temperature data:
Midwestern Regional Climate Center and Indiana State Climate Office, Purdue University