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Streamflow conditions across the country took a strong upturn during February, with many streams in a broad band from Maryland through the Ohio Valley and into the Midwest and the Dakotas and much of the Far West reporting well-above normal streamflows according to a month-end check of water resources conditions by the U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior.

USGS hydrologists said that the strong February upturn was reflected in the combined flow of the nation's ‘Big Five’ rivers—Mississippi, Ohio, St. Lawrence, Missouri, and Columbia—which averaged 1180 billion gallons a day (bgd) during February, 47% above normal and the highest flow above the monthly average in more than 2 years. The Big Five drain more than half of the conterminous United States and serve as a quick check on the status of the nation's water resources. Working in cooperation with federal, state, and local officials across the country, USGS hydrologists regularly collect information on surface and groundwater conditions at more than 65,000 gaging stations.