Spring Floods in the U.S. Midwest and Canada
acquired May 4, 2011 download large image (8 MB, JPEG, 8192x4552)
Spring Floods in the U.S. Midwest and Canada
acquired April 29, 2011 download large image (7 MB, JPEG, 8192x4552)
Spring Floods in the U.S. Midwest and Canada
acquired April 29, 2010 download large image (8 MB, JPEG, 8192x4552)

After the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers breached a levee to save the city of Cairo, Illinois, on May 2, 2011, agricultural fields remained flooded two days later. The levee breach flooded roughly 130,000 acres of nearby farmland in the Birds Point-New Madrid Floodway.

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured these images of the area on May 4, 2011 (top), April 29, 2011 (middle), and April 29, 2010 (bottom). All three images use a combination of visible and infrared light to increase contrast between water and land. Water ranges in color from electric blue to navy. Vegetation is green. Bare ground is earth-toned.

The most striking difference between May 4 and April 29, 2011, is the inundation of the Birds Point-New Madrid Floodway. Both scenes, however, show severe flood conditions along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers. The image from 2010 shows the rivers under more normal circumstances.

NASA images courtesy MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.

Instrument(s): 
Terra - MODIS

Spring Floods in the U.S. Midwest and Canada

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Early Spring Floods in Indiana High Waters along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers Rising Waters on the Mississippi River Rising Waters on the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers Rising Waters on the James River Retreating Snow and Advancing Water in the Upper Midwest Receding Snow Sets Stage for Floods near Fargo Spring Flooding in the Upper Midwest Rising Rivers in the U.S. Midwest Rising Waters along the Red River Spring Floods in Saskatchewan Spring Flooding in Manitoba Heavy Rain in Central United States Flooding along the Mississippi River Continued Flooding along the Mississippi Flooding along the James River, South Dakota Flooding in Wake of Levee Breach Spring Floods in the U.S. Midwest and Canada Flooding along the Wabash and Ohio Rivers Flooding at the Junction of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers Floods Spread South along the Mississippi River High Waters along the Mississippi River Floods Continue along the Mississippi River Flooding Continues along the Red River Flooding in Memphis Flooding in Arkansas Flooding reaches Vicksburg, Mississippi Morganza Floodway, 1973 Floodwaters near Natchez Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi Morganza Spillway Opens in Louisiana Mississippi Floods in Arkansas and Tennessee Mississippi Floods in Missouri and Tennessee Flooding near New Madrid, Missouri Water in the Morganza Floodway Morganza Floodway after Five Days of Flow Mississippi Floods near Vicksburg Sediment Plume in Lake Pontchartrain Lingering Floods along the Mississippi River Lower Mississippi River Remains Swollen Waters Spread Across Floodway above Morgan City Lay of the Land Between Old River and the Mississippi Floodwaters Recede along Wabash and Ohio Rivers Floodwaters Retreat from Birds Point-New Madrid Floodway Lingering Floods in Louisiana Morganza Floodway Lingering Floodwaters near Vicksburg, Mississippi Sediment from the Mississippi Floods Sediment in the Gulf of Mexico Floods Recede around the Wabash-Ohio Confluence
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