I have the impression the Baton Rouge area was under a La Niña weather effect. Is this still true or has the pattern shifted?
Yes, La Niña is still in effect, and is expected to remain so for the next couple of months, although a slow fade is anticipated. And yes, Las Niñas tend to be the "dry phase" of ENSO (El Niño / Southern Oscillation). In fact, up until mid January, the pattern was holding true to form: while the last two weeks have been very "wet," November, December and the first half of January were "dry."
A return to a "drier" pattern is still anticipated later in February and expected to persist into March, at least.
Now . . . all that said . . . remember that some work I did at LSU shows that most, but not all, Las Niñas (about 80%) make for drier-than-normal weather over south Louisiana from November through April. That does not exclude:
- (1) that roughly 1-in-5 "La Niña winters" end up wetter-than-normal in south Louisiana, and
- (2) that departures from the La Niña winter-term "drier pattern" SHOULD be expected over the 6-month period, but that the 6-month period as a whole will tend to show a below-normal rain total.
Hope this helps!