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Recent snowfall won't relieve drought conditions

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DETROIT LAKES, Minn. - With all the snow in parts of Minnesota, it seems surreal to think more than 80 percent of the state is in a severe or extreme drought.

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Climatologists say that most of the snow will run off into rivers and lakes next spring because of the frozen ground, which doesn't do much for the dry soil.

Department of Natural Resources experts say the drought is affecting Minnesota's wildlife. In a state wildlife management area near Detroit Lakes, a beaver lodge is empty because water levels have dropped significantly. Wildlife supervisor Blane Kelmek tells Minnesota Public Radio News (http://bit.ly/TRqbXM) the family of beavers probably moved to a larger pond or lake, making them vulnerable to predators.

The drought conditions have also reduced food sources for many animals, including black bears.

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Information from: Minnesota Public Radio News, http://www.mpr.org

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