Drought Turns Severe In Monroe, Oregon Counties
Drought conditions in Missouri as of Apr. 23rd, 2024. (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.)

Inconsistent rains have resulted in several areas of Missouri declining into drought or abnormal dryness in the past week.  This week’s US Drought Monitor shows the emergence of severe drought conditions in northern Monroe County, along with most of Oregon County in south central Missouri.  Moderate drought also expanded in two locations last week, with Howard, Pettis, Randolph, Saline, northern Boone, northern Cooper, and western Audrain counties entering the first stage of drought conditions.  Lawrence County, along with western Christian, western McDonald, eastern Barry, northern Bates, northern Henry, and northern Stone counties also entered moderate drought this week, while abnormal dryness spread into Douglas, Howell and Ozark counties.  Pre-drought conditions also made their way into most of St Clair and Vernon counties, as well as southeastern Bates County.

Localized areas of improvement did occur, with northwestern Nodaway County and a narrow band snaking from northeastern Butler through western Stoddard into southern Bollinger County leaving moderate drought.  Gasconade, Phelps, and nearly all of Texas counties exited abnormal dryness, as did northern Mercer, central Clark and central Scotland counties.

39.5 percent of Missouri is in some stage of drought this week, including 3.4 percent in severe drought.  The overall figure increased 5.9 percentage points from last week.  Another 32.8 percent of Missouri is abnormally dry, leaving 27.7 percent with normal or excess moisture.