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Pictures | Wed Jan 9, 2013 | 6:39pm EST

USDA declares drought disaster in much of Wheat Belt

A damaged corn field in Harvey County, in central Kansas in this August 7, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's winter wheat harvest. REUTERS/Jeff Tuttle/Files

A damaged corn field in Harvey County, in central Kansas in this August 7, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this...more

A damaged corn field in Harvey County, in central Kansas in this August 7, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's winter wheat harvest. REUTERS/Jeff Tuttle/Files
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Farmer Matt Johnson pauses while in a dead area of his popcorn crop fields on his family's farm in Redkey, Indiana June 28, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's winter wheat harvest. REUTERS/Brent Smith/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENVIRONMENT AGRICULTURE BUSINESS)

Farmer Matt Johnson pauses while in a dead area of his popcorn crop fields on his family's farm in Redkey, Indiana June 28, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9,...more

Farmer Matt Johnson pauses while in a dead area of his popcorn crop fields on his family's farm in Redkey, Indiana June 28, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's winter wheat harvest. REUTERS/Brent Smith/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENVIRONMENT AGRICULTURE BUSINESS)
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A sprinkler is in use near Dodge City, Kansas, in this November 26, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's winter wheat harvest. REUTERS/Kevin Murphy/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: AGRICULTURE ENVIRONMENT)

A sprinkler is in use near Dodge City, Kansas, in this November 26, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's...more

A sprinkler is in use near Dodge City, Kansas, in this November 26, 2012, file photo. The government declared much of the central and southern Wheat Belt a natural disaster area on January 9, 2013, due to persistent drought that imperils this year's winter wheat harvest. REUTERS/Kevin Murphy/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: AGRICULTURE ENVIRONMENT)
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