A drought occurs when there is a deficit in the precipitation an area receives compared to the average that same area receives over time. In Wisconsin, some regions may experience drought while others do not. The amount of time an area can be in a drought can range from weeks to months. You may notice signs of drought like parched, yellowed lawns and stressed or stunted vegetation. Longer periods of dry weather may also impact water availability.
Dry, hot weather increases evaporation rates of soil and vegetation, resulting in decreased soil moisture. This impacts recharge, or the amount of water that reaches groundwater. This may affect water supply and can result in lower flows in our streams, rivers, lakes and wetlands. Drought conditions also increase the risk and severity of wildfires.