Drought Causes More Problems

Posted in: Iowa City Owl
Iowa is right in the center of a record drought, and this year's crops are not the only things suffering as a result of it. The wildlife is suffering just as much.

This summer's drought has been the worst in over half a century. Temperatures have been high, and the effects of the lack of rain have hit this year's crops in an incredible way. Farmers have predicted total losses on their corn fields this year in some areas.

The crops are not the only thing that have been hit by the drought. Trees in parks are dying, and park crews are struggling to keep the newly planted trees watered so that they will stay alive. Older trees will experience the problems from the drought further in time.

The Iowa River is flowing at less than 10 percent of what is normal. Workers have to tend to the areas The remaining water is a much higher temperature, which has an effect on the wildlife as well.

Animals have been searching for water and suffering because of it. Fish have been dying in small amounts of water as ponds dry up. Turtles have been spotted crossing roads in large numbers trying to find water.

Along with dead fish in ponds, waterfowl have been suffering. They have been avoiding the ponds and searching for food and water in other places - even in yards. Geese have been reported grazing on watered plants in some yards.

One of the very few plus sides of the drought is that the mosquitoes that usually plague areas with a lot of water have not been such a problem this year. There is not a lot of standing water, so there are not a lot of mosquitoes.

This week's rain and cooler temperatures has done a small amount to help the corn, but it may be too little, too late for much of it.

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