The word ‘Agrometeorology’ is the abbreviated form of agricultural meteorology to study the interaction between meteorological and hydrological factors on the one hand and agriculture in the widest sense, including horticulture, animal husbandry and forestry on the other (WMO).
Agrometeorology deals with the behaviour of the weather elements, which have direct relevance to agriculture and their effect on crop production. Weather and climate are the important factors determining the success or failure of agriculture. Weather influences agricultural operations from sowing of a crop to the harvest and particularly rainfed agriculture depends on the mercy of the weather. In India every year there is
a considerable damage by floods in one part of the country and a severe drought causing famines in another part. The total annual pre harvest losses for the various crops are estimated from 10 to 100%; while, the post harvest losses are estimated between 5 and 15%.
Hence, Agrometeorology is very important in the following ways:
• Helps in planning cropping patterns/systems.
• Selecting of sowing dates for optimum crop yield.
• To go for cost effective ploughing, harrowing, weeding etc.
• Reducing losses of applied chemicals and fertilizers. Avoid fertilizer and chemical sprays when rain is forecast
• Judicious irrigation to crops.
- Efficient harvesting of all crops.
- Reducing or eliminating outbreak of pests and diseases.
• Efficient management of soils, which are formed out of weather action.
• Managing weather abnormalities like cyclones, heavy rainfall, floods, drought etc. This can be achieved by weather forecasting.
• Mitigation measures such as shelterbelts against cold and heat waves, effective environmental protection. etc.
• Avoiding or minimizing losses due to forest fires.