Thursday's Drought Monitor from the University of Nebraska- Lincoln National Drought Mitigation Center shows significant improvements for areas of Nebraska and Iowa where recent heavy rains have fallen.
Brian Fuchs, a climatologist at the center, says overall drought reduced last week by about 17 percent in Nebraska and nearly 12 percent in Iowa.
Nebraska saw a substantial reduction in drought intensity in the east-central region, and there is now a pocket considered drought-free.
Fuchs says the improvements seen within the past week are noteworthy, as changes in drought status typically occur slowly.
A small area in the southwest corner of the state remains in extreme drought, while no section of Nebraska is considered to be in exceptional drought. However, a large portion of the state does fall under the abnormally dry to severe drought classifications.