The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) forecast for April calls for above-normal precip for the bulk of Nebraska southward, including Missouri, the Delta and the southern halves of Illinois and Indiana. If realized, beneficial precip would aid the winter wheat crop, but could result in spring fieldwork and planting delays.
Meanwhile, the forecast calls for equal chances of normal, below- or above-normal temps for much of the Corn Belt and Plains, while below-normal temps are expected across the Delta. Above-normal temps are expected west of the Rockies into the Dakotas, arching into northern Minnesota and reaching back into the Northeast.
CPC Outlooks for April:
The outlook for April through June calls for wetter-than-normal conditions to prevail across the Central and Southern Plains westward, but below-normal precip is expected across Wisconsin and Michigan, with equal chances of normal, below- or above-normal precip for the remainder of the Corn Belt and Northern Plains. Meanwhile, above-normal temps are expected across the West, Dakotas, Minnesota and much of the eastern Corn Belt, while cooler conditions are expected across much of Texas.
CPC Outlooks for April-June:
CPC says while El Nino is weakening, the seasonal outlook for April through June is still largely influenced by the event. "The current El Nino conditions are strong and likely will be at least moderate as April begins," states CPC, noting it expects a transition to ENSO-neutral conditions sometime this summer with greater than a 50% chance of La Nina developing in the September through November timeframe. "The likelihood of La Nina developing by next winter is substantial."
Below, compare the Seasonal Drought Outlook to the current Drought Monitor:
In its Seasonal Drought Outlook, the CPC looks for scattered drought in North Dakota and Oklahoma. Some improvement is expected in northern California, while drought in southern California is expected to persist. The Midwest is expected to remain drought-free.