Improvements in Southern Missouri Offset By More Drought In The North

Ten counties in Southwest Missouri exited moderate drought this week, but the gains were offset by nine counties in Northern Missouri entering the first stage of drought conditions.  The weekly update from the U.S. Drought Monitor showed an end to drought conditions for areas of central Osage and eastern Cole counties, as well as much of the Lake of the Ozarks region and points west.  A majority of Cedar, Dade, and St Clair counties, along with parts of seven surrounding counties, exited abnormally dry conditions.  Portions of Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Osage, Maries and Phelps counties were upgraded from severe to moderate drought.

However, conditions worsened for much of Northern Missouri.  Drought expanded in the past week to cover all or most of Andrew, Chariton, Clay, Clinton, Daviess, DeKalb, Harrison, Lafayette, Linn, Macon, Ray and Saline counties, along with southern Caldwell and the eastern edges of Carroll and Livingston counties.  45.6 percent of Missouri is in severe or moderate drought, virtually unchanged on the week, even as 1.7 percent of the state was upgraded to moderate from severe.  3.8 percent of the state has normal or excess moisture.