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Indiana Department of Natural Resources

Water > Water Availability / Use / Rights > Water Resource Updates (updated monthly) > Monthly Water Resource Summary Monthly Water Resource Summary

April, 2015

Precipitation

April 2015 Indiana precipitation was generally below normal across the northern one-third of the state, with the rest of Indiana above normal. Temperature on the whole was above normal. The statewide monthly precipitation average was about 116 percent of normal. The overall monthly temperature average for Indiana was 52.8 degrees Fahrenheit or 1.8 degrees above normal.

Six of Indiana’s nine climate divisions received above normal precipitation for the month of April. The southwestern climate division received the highest (153.3) percentage of normal precipitation for the month, while the northwestern division received the lowest (66.8) percentage.

For the year to date, three of the nine climate divisions have received above normal precipitation, ranging from 65.3 percent for the northwestern climate division to 122.2 percent for the southwestern division. For the 2015 water year, which began October 1, 2014, total precipitation is below normal for six of the nine climate divisions (76.4 to 113.4%). Starting from January 2014, six of the state’s climate divisions have received above normal precipitation. Those ranges are from 95.0 percent for the north-central division to 110.7 percent for the south-central division.

For the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) long-term 12-month index, Indiana’s nine climate divisions are each in the “near normal” category. The 6-month index shows the northwestern climate division in the “severely dry” range. The rest of the divisions are in the “near normal” category. For the 3-month index, the northwestern climate division is in the “severely dry” range, the northeastern division in the “moderately dry” category, and the southwestern division is in the “moderately wet” range. The remaining divisions are in the “near normal” category. The 1-month index shows the southwestern, south-central, and southeastern climate divisions in the “moderately wet” range. The rest of the state lies in the “near normal” category.

U. S. Drought Monitor
The period ending April 28, 2015 showed portions of northern and west-central Indiana as abnormally dry. About 78 percent of Indiana showed no drought conditions.

Streamflow
Mean monthly flows for three of the 12 monitored streams were below their historical mean monthly flow for the month of April. The Eel River at North Manchester had the lowest mean monthly flow with 64 percent of the historical mean flow for the month. The Muscatatuck River near Deputy had the highest mean monthly flow with 207 percent of the historical mean flow for the month.

Detailed Information on Streamflow

Lake Michigan

The lake Michigan-Huron water level for April was four inches above last month’s water level, and 15 inches above the April 2014 water level. Comparison of April monthly mean water levels to long-term (1918-present) averages shows that Michigan-Huron water levels were about four inches above average. On April 30, 2015, the Michigan-Huron water level was 579.26 feet. The water level was about 33 inches above the previously lowest recorded monthly mean level for April, set in 1964.

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

Reservoirs

The water levels in six of the eight Indiana reservoirs being monitored by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was at or above its normal pool elevation on May 3, 2015. The normal pool deviation ranged from -3.4 feet (Salamonie) to 16.3 feet (Cagles Mill).

Each of the three reservoirs monitored by Citizens Water-Morse, Geist, and Eagle Creek- was above its normal pool elevation as of April 29, 2015. The reservoirs’ deviation from their normal pools ranged from 0.70 feet (Eagle Creek) to 0.43 feet (Morse).

Ground Water Levels

As of April 30, 2015, recent water level data are available for each of the nine wells being monitored. The water level for the observation wells is below normal for LaPorte 9, Fulton 7, LaGrange 2, and Morgan 4; and near or above normal for Vigo 7, Randolph 3, Posey 3, Harrison 8, and Clark 20. Groundwater levels are expected to decrease through May for much of the state.

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

Standard 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

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

Palmer Drought Severity Index:
U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Weather Service

Temperature data:
Indiana State Climate Office, Purdue University