The Watertown-Fort Drum metropolitan area has one of the most rapid decreasing populations in the country.

According to U.S. Census estimates released Thursday, the metro area in northern New York has had a recent population decrease of 1.2 percent, ranking fifth on the list of metro areas nationwide that the most people have moved out of.

Watertown-Fort Drum was behind only Charleston, West Virginia; Pine Bluff, Arkansas; Farmington, New Mexico; and Danville, Illinois.

Northern New York has often had larger population decreases than the rest of the state in recent years.

Census data showed that much of the counties in upstate New York had a population decrease between 0.01 percent and 1.29 percent, where counties with the cities of Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo, Ithaca, Albany and Plattsburgh either had an unchanged population amount of a slight increase.

Statewide, New York’s population dropped by 48,500, a decline of 0.25 percent.