Drought Monitor Upgrades Significant Portions Of Missouri
Drought conditions in Missouri as of Oct. 31st, 2023. (The U.S. Drought Monitor is jointly produced by the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the United States Department of Agriculture, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Map courtesy of NDMC.)

Heavy rain last week provided significant improvements for Missouri according to this week’s update of the U.S. Drought Monitor.  A majority of the state’s counties saw a one-step improvement in the monitor compared to last week, while central Boone County enjoyed a bounce from extreme to moderate drought.  Extreme drought in Missouri is now limited to Schuyler County and the northwestern corner of Scotland County, along with a band stretching from western Benton County southwest into northeastern Vernon County.  Abnormal dryness disappeared from several portions of the Bootheel and Southeast Missouri, but did sneak into the Ironton area of the Lead Belt.  Moderate drought also expanded in one area of the state this week, along the Iowa border in Nodaway and Worth counties.

Just under half of Missouri is in some stage of drought, with the area in extreme drought now accounting for just 1.8 percent of the state.  Another 14.9 percent remains in severe drought.  Just shy of a quarter of Missouri is in abnormal dryness, meaning that 25.1 percent of the state now enjoys normal or excess moisture, an 11.3 point increase from last week.