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Prepared by Florida Climate Center
The Florida State University
Tallahassee, FL

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Key Points:

  • January average temperatures were above normal statewide for the month.
  • Monthly precipitation totals were below normal for the month.
  • Drought conditions improved in the Panhandle during the month but persisted in the Big Bend region; the Peninsula became abnormally dry by month’s end.
  • La Niña conditions in the equatorial Pacific Ocean weakened, and a transition to ENSO-neutral is expected over the next couple of months.


Average monthly temperatures in January were above normal across the state. Average temperature departures from normal ranged from +1.3 ̊F in Melbourne to +6.8 ̊F in Pensacola for the month (see Table 1 and Appendix 1 for select cities). Following a cold end to December, mean average temperatures in January were well above normal during the beginning of the month. During the first week, departures from normal ranged from +5 ̊F in south Florida to +13 ̊F in the western Panhandle. Select daily high maximum temperature records tied or broken during the month are provided in Appendix 2.

Table 1.  January average temperatures and departures from normal ( ̊F) for selected cities.

Station Mean Temperature Departure from Normal
Pensacola 60.0 +6.8
Tallahassee 57.5 +5.3
Jacksonville 58.0 +3.8
Orlando 64.4 +3.8
Tampa 64.6 +2.6
Miami 72.1 +3.5
Key West 72.6 +2.0 


January was generally dry, with monthly rainfall totals below normal for much of the state. The monthly precipitation departures from normal ranged from -3.26 inches in West Palm Beach to +2.27 inches in Tallahassee (see Table 2 and Appendix 1 for additional locations). The Tallahassee and Apalachicola areas picked up several inches of rain toward the end of the month, which helped to alleviate drought in this area, but generally most places were dry and, as a result, abnormally dry conditions appeared over much of the Peninsula by the end of the month.

Table 2. January precipitation totals and departures from normal (inches) for selected cities.

Station Total Rainfall Departure from Normal
Pensacola 4.03 -1.00
Tallahassee 6.68 +2.27
Jacksonville 2.18 -1.10
Orlando 1.01 -1.47
Tampa 1.55 -1.10
Miami 0.05 -1.78
Key West 0.08 -1.75 


Figure 1. A graphical depiction of the monthly rainfall departure from normal (inches) for January (courtesy of NOAA, NWS).

Figure 1.  A graphical depiction of the monthly rainfall departure from normal (inches) for January (courtesy of NOAA, NWS).


La Niña Continues but Weakens.

A weak La Niña was still in place throughout the month of January with signs of weakening. Sea surface temperatures in the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean were not as cold as they have been, with the latest Niño index values generally near -0.5°C, and sub-surface temperatures warmed too. There is forecaster consensus that La Niña is expected to continue to weaken, with a transition to ENSO-neutral over the next couple of months. ENSO-neutral is expected to then persist through the Northern Hemisphere spring and early summer. There are increasing chances of El Niño at longer forecast horizons, though large uncertainty remains.


Hazardous Weather Events in January.

According to the Local Storm Reports issued by the local National Weather Service offices serving Florida, there were 140 individual local reports of hazardous weather events recorded across the state during the month of January (see Table 4 for a breakdown by event type). No major impacts were reported.

Table 4. Breakdown of storm reports submitted in Florida during the month of January (compiled from Iowa State University/Iowa Environmental Mesonet).

Report Type Number of Reports
Heavy Rain 0
Flood 0
Coastal Flood 0
Hail 2
Marine Thunderstorm Wind 35
Non-Thunderstorm Wind Gust 22
Non-Thunderstorm Wind Damage 1
Tornado/Waterspout/Funnel Cloud 6/0/2
Thunderstorm Wind Damage 27
Thunderstorm Wind Gust 43
Rip Currents 0
Wildfire 2


Daily Record Events in January.

Table 5.Summary of daily records broken or set in Florida in January (source: NCEI Daily Weather Records).

Category Number of Records
Highest daily max. temp. 69
Highest daily min. temp. 39
Lowest daily max. temp. 6
Lowest daily min. temp. 3
Highest daily precipitation 6
Total 123


Weather/Climate Highlight of the Month:

January temperatures were above average, and the statewide monthly average maximum temperature ranked 12th-warmest on record. Many daily high maximum temperature records were broken during the month. Key West reached a high of 90 ̊F several times during the month, including on the 23rd, 25th and 31st, which shattered previous records of 83 ̊F, 82 ̊F and 83 ̊F set on this day in 1973, 2012 and 1946, respectively.


Drought-Related Impacts.

By the middle of January, severe drought (D2) affected the eastern Panhandle and Big Bend regions. About 16% of the state was in severe drought (D2), 13% was in moderate drought (D1), and 13% was abnormally dry, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. By the end of the month, drought was removed in the Panhandle, but 8% of the state remained in severe drought (D2), 8% was in moderate drought (D1), and 57% was abnormally dry (Figure 2 below).

As of January 31, the Lake Okeechobee water level was 16.02 ft. above sea level (Feet-NGVD29), which is above average for this time of the year. At the first of the month, the water level was 16.36 ft. above sea level.


Figure 2. A graphical depiction of the current drought conditions in Florida according to the U.S. Drought Monitor (courtesy of the National Drought Mitigation Center, University of Nebraska-Lincoln).

drought monitor


Agriculture-Related Impacts.

During the month of January, Florida pasture conditions remained mostly fair to good but cold spells and lack of rainfall in the southern half of the State did hurt some pastures with reports of bleaching and frost. Livestock remained in mostly fair to good condition. Sugarcane planting and harvest progressed well, while citrus activities included the removal of dead trees and other maintenance activities. Several vegetable crops were planted and harvested, such as green beans, yellow squash, potatoes, sweet corn, pepper, and avocado. Preparation for rice planting also began during the latter part of the month. For more information, consult the Crop Progress - State Stories reports, which are produced monthly December through March by the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service.


Appendix 1
Additional January departures from normal data for select Florida locations (Source: NWS).

Station Average Temperature (˚F) Departure from Normal (˚F) Total Rainfall (in.) Departure from Normal (in.)
Gainesville 58.5 +3.7 1.65 -1.64
Sarasota 64.3 +1.9 1.43 -1.36
Melbourne 64.6 +1.3 0.43 -2.20
Fort Myers 68.9 +4.2 1.33 -1.10
West Palm Beach 69.8 +3.5 0.21 -3.26


Appendix 2
Select daily record high maximum temperatures (°F) broken or tied during January (compiled from NOAA).

Location Date Record Broken/Tied Last
Stuart 1 86 Broken 85 in 2022
Niceville 2 79 Broken 78 in 1975
Pensacola 2 79 Broken 74 in 2009
Key West 2 90 Broken 86 in 2022
Cross City 3 82 Broken 81 in 2015
Deland 3 85 Tied 85 in 1907
Pensacola 3 81 Broken 79 in 2020
Hastings 4 83 Broken 82 in 2015
Crestview 4 79 Broken 77 in 1997
Sanford 5 86 Broken 84 in 2015
Miami 5 86 Broken 84 in 2015
West Palm Beach 5 86 Broken 84 in 1972
Key West 8 88 Broken 85 in 2022
Marianna 12 80 Broken 79 in 2017
Crestview 17 80 Tied 80 in 2017
Pensacola 17 80 Broken 78 in 2017
Jacksonville Beach 19 83 Broken 82 in 2001
Plant City 19 85 Tied 85 in 2001
Key West 19 88 Broken 82 in 2020
Jacksonville 19 84 Broken 83 in 2001
Tallahassee 19 84 Broken 79 in 2001
Mayport 22 83 Broken 80 in 2017
Key West 22 89 Broken 84 in 2017
Hialeah 23 85 Broken 84 in 2017
Miami 23 88 Broken 85 in 2007
Key West 23 90 Broken 83 in 1973
Perrine 24 86 Broken 84 in 2018
Plant City 25 88 Broken 86 in 1898
Orlando 25 86 Broken 85 in 1990
Gainesville 25 82 Broken 81 in 1990
Vero Beach 25 86 Broken 84 in 2002
Key West 25 90 Broken 82 in 2012
Clermont 26 87 Broken 84 in 1962
Daytona Beach 26 84 Broken 82 in 1965
Key West 28 89 Broken 83 in 1997
Miles City 29 87 Tied 87 in 1990
Key West 29 88 Broken 84 in 1997
Jacksonville Beach 30 88 Broken 83 in 1991
Gainesville 30 86 Broken 84 in 2013
Crestview 30 83 Broken 78 in 2013
Tallahassee 30 83 Tied 83 in 1957
Jacksonville 30 87 Broken 85 in 2013
Jacksonville Beach 31 88 Broken 85 in 1985
Gainesville 31 85 Broken 83 in 1985
Key West 31 90 Broken 83 in 1946

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