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U.S. drought deepens in plains states, wheat crop suffers

reuters / Hot and dry conditions in parts of middle America have deepened an ongoing drought in many states.

October is typically the third-wettest month for Texas, but instead last month was the ninth driest since 1895. Oklahoma was also dry and like Texas, saw above-normal temperatures. The persistent drought was hindering growth of the winter wheat crop in those states, and pastures remained parched.

The portion of the contiguous U.S. now deemed to be under “extreme” or “exceptional” drought — the two most dire classifications — continues to edge up and now stands at 19.36 per cent. The area classed as “moderate” shrank slightly and is just under the 60 per cent mark.

In the High Plains, which include Kansas, Nebraska and the Dakotas, severe or worse drought levels covered 83.94 per cent of the region, with 57.54 per cent of the region in extreme or worse drought.

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