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Extreme drought leaves AL, NC but abnormally dry conditions expand across the Southeast

The latest Drought Monitor, released this morning, shows that extreme (D3) drought has been removed from Alabama and North Carolina due to recent rains in the area.  However, generally warmer and drier conditions in most of the rest of the region has led to an expansion of dry and droughty conditions across the region.  D0 or higher values increased from 70 to almost 85% coverage across the region.  Severe drought was introduced to northern Florida in the Big Bend area including Gainesville.  Fortunately for most of the region except the Florida peninsula, quite a bit of rain is expected over the next few days along with the unusually warm temperatures, so some of the dry conditions may go away, especially in the areas that get the most rain.