Drought conditions in south-central and southeast Arkansas have improved from last week, but some other state counties have experienced a slight increase in drought severity, the National Weather Service in Little Rock said Thursday.
A Tuesday snapshot of the U.S. Drought Monitor, compiled by the Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, shows that conditions in nine southeast counties have improved since Oct. 8 from severe to moderate drought: Ashley, Bradley, Calhoun, Chicot, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Lincoln and Union. Severe status is given to areas with a deficit of 3 to 4 inches of rain over a 30-day period; moderate drought denotes a deficit of between 2 and 3 inches in that period.
In three central Arkansas counties — Conway, Faulkner and Perry — the drought worsened from abnormally dry to moderate drought, according to the drought monitor. Abnormal dryness means an area is deficient of 1 to 2 inches of rain over a 30-day period.
Drought conditions have improved since a year ago, when the majority of the state was parched with severe drought and at least 25 counties ranging from Northwest to mid-central Arkansas experienced extreme drought.