Long, cold Wisconsin winter shortens maple syruping season, but total taps reach state record

It follows the longest season in 2018

The maple syrup season was short in 2019 --- not surprisingly for a long and extremely cold winter, which delayed the start of sap running.

The season lasted a total of only 24 days on average with the season length varying based on geography and other factors. It was the shortest season since 2015 when the sap ran for an average of 23 days in the state.

In contrast, the 2018 season was one of the longest on record at 36 days.

The statewide tap count reached 800,000 taps this year, cresting the 800,000 mark for the first time. These statistics are compiled by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (a branch of the U.S. Department of Agricultural). For the five previous years the tap hovered in the 700,000’s.

Wisconsin has usually ranked fourth after Vermont, New York and Maine in the number of taps. Vermont has generally produced about 700 percent of the syrup produced in Wisconsin despite Vermont’s smaller geographic size. The total annual output for the state won’t be available until later in 2019.

Maple sugaring normally begins when sap begins to run in sugar and other species of maple trees. That is brought on by daytime temperatures above 32 degrees Fahrenheit and nights that are still below freezing.

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