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Tuesday, May 17, 2011 - 9:17am

Drought Conditions Worsen Across Ga.

Most of middle and south Georgia is rated as being in moderate to severe drought, and the state's climatologist isn't holding out hope for improvement soon.

Climatologist David Stooksbury says he's pessimistic about the southern portion of the state's prospects for sufficient rain. Glynn County and other portions of southeast Georgia are rated by the U.S. Drought Monitor as being in extreme drought.

When the La Niña weather pattern developed heading into winter, Stooksbury predicted drought was possible with warmer and drier conditions forecast.

During the past six months, the National Weather service says the Macon area received about 16 inches of rain, about 8 1/2 fewer inches than the norm of 24.51.

Stooksbury says drought-stricken communities will need above-average rainfall during the next three months to catch up.