To understand the impacts of drought on plants, animals and people, it is
very helpful to monitor conditions regularly, whether the weather is wet or dry.
That way we know how a drought year differs from a normal year, and we learn how
different plants and animals go into and come out of drought. Regular condition
monitoring can also help identify expected seasonal changes versus changes
caused by unseasonal wet or dry conditions. This type of monitoring can also
help us start to identify long-term or cumulative effects of drought.
It would be ideal if you decide to report on a single indicator at regular
intervals, such as every month or season. You can also include other information
in your report, but we’d really like to have a continuous set of observations
about a single indicator. It might be easiest to do ongoing reporting if it’s
something you can quantify, such as the height of corn, or the number of
customers at a water-related outfitter. If you have questions or would like to
organize a network of observers, please contact Kelly Helm Smith,
Ideas for what to monitor the condition of fall into several categories,
sometimes more than one: