Monday, 5 January 2009 - Monthly Climate Summary for Northern Territory - Product code IDCKGC12R0
Whole of Territory averages …
After a torrid build-up with above average temperatures, the western Top End saw a relatively early onset to the north-Australian monsoon, as Tropical Cyclone Billy formed in the Joseph Boneparte Gulf on the 18th. This system brought heavy rainfall to the Top End’s west coast as it intensified to a category 2 cyclone, before making landfall on the WA coast just to the north of Wyndham on the 19th. Darwin recorded 26 rain days for the month of December, the most number of December rain days recorded since 1957.
Another low-pressure system formed in the Gulf of Carpentaria late in December, which brought some heavy rains to much of the remainder of the Top End. Some heavy rain was also recorded in the Gulf Country and northern Barkly district late in the month. Thunderstorm activity was prevalent in southern parts early in the month, giving southern half of the Alice Springs district above average falls, following on from record falls experienced in the region in November.
Most of the Territory saw cooler days than average, except for the lower rainfall regions of the Barkly and Tanami. Night-time temperatures were near-to-above average over most of the Territory.
The wettest overall was 1126.5 mm at Roper River Mataranka, followed by 869.8 mm at Geriatric Park, followed by 665.9 mm at Channel Point.
Some sites had their highest total December rainfall on record.
Some sites had their lowest total December rainfall on record.
The wettest single day 286.0 mm at Roper River Mataranka on the 30th, followed by 262.5 mm at Roper River Mataranka on the 29th, followed by 231.4 mm at Bradshaw AWS on the 25th.
The hottest day was 43.5°C at Walungurru AWS on the 2nd, followed by 43.4°C at Jervois on the 4th, followed by 43.1°C at Rabbit Flat on the 3rd and Brunette Downs on the 5th.
The warmest days on average were 39.3°C at Rabbit Flat, followed by 38.7°C at Elliott, followed by 38.4°C at Brunette Downs.
The coolest days on average were 31.8°C at McCluer Island AWS, followed by 31.8°C at Point Fawcett AWS, followed by 31.9°C at Dum In Mirrie AWS, followed by 32.0°C at Black Point and Central Arnhem Plateau AWS.
The coldest day was 24.7°C at Kulgera on the 6th, followed by 24.9°C at Arltunga on the 6th, followed by 25.0°C at Watarrka on the 5th.
The coldest nights were 11.8°C at Arltunga on the 15th and 16th, followed by 12.4°C at Kulgera on the 19th, followed by 13.0°C at Kulgera on the 14th.
The coolest nights on average were 20.9°C at Alice Springs Airport, followed by 21.3°C at Yuendumu, followed by 21.7°C at Curtin Springs.
The warmest nights on average were 27.4°C at Centre Island AWS.
The warmest night was 30.0°C at Centre Island AWS on the 11th, followed by 29.9°C at Ngayawili AWS on the 11th, followed by 29.7°C at Ngayawili AWS on the 10th, followed by 29.7°C at Dum In Mirrie AWS on the 11th.
Some sites had their highest December mean daily minimum temperature on record.
| 43.5°C at Walungurru AWS on the 2nd
|Warmest days on average
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
|39.3°C at Rabbit Flat|
|Coolest days on average
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
|31.8°C at McCluer Island AWS and Point Fawcett AWS|
Lowest daily maximum temperature
|24.7°C at Kulgera on the 6th|
| 11.8°C at Arltunga on the 15th and 16th
|Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
| 20.9°C at Alice Springs Airport
|Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
| 27.4°C at Centre Island AWS|
Highest daily minimum temperature
30.0°C at Centre Island AWS on the 11th
Highest total rainfall
| 1126.5 mm at Roper River Mataranka|
Highest daily rainfall
|286.0 mm at Roper River Mataranka on the 30th|
|Record highest December daily rainfall|
|Highest daily rainfall (mm)||Previous highest||Years of
|Mataranka Homestead Resort||156.0||on the 24th||128.3||on the 18th in 1956||60|
|The Garden||129.0||on the 11th||80.0||on the 18th in 1975||52|
|Bullita||214.0||on the 25th||165.1||on the 28th in 1929||37|
|Gove Airport||140.6||on the 23rd||111.8||on the 1st in 1999||32|
|Timber Creek||109.8||on the 25th||96.2||on the 25th in 2007||26|
|Yirrkala Tropical Gardens||136.0||on the 23rd||110.0||on the 15th in 2006||25|
|Litchfield||137.0||on the 20th||126.2||on the 18th in 1980||19|
|Watarrka||41.8||on the 6th||38.2||on the 17th in 1999||17|
|Record highest total December rainfall|
|Total rainfall (mm)||Previous highest||Years of
|Mataranka Homestead Resort||626.8||396.7||in 1956||64||142.2|
|Mango Farm||524.4||446.1||in 2000||27||229.3|
|Timber Creek||370.5||308.5||in 2005||27||167.0|
|Channel Point||665.9||534.6||in 2000||18||292.1|
|Record highest December mean daily minimum temperature|
Mean daily minimum
|Previous highest||Years of
|Brunette Downs||25.8||= 25.8||in 2005||43||24.3|
|Douglas River||24.5||24.4||in 2004||15||23.5|
This table is very wide and may not fit if printed.
|Summary statistics for December 2008|
|Darwin-Daly (district 14GA)|
|Batchelor Aero AWS||32.8||−1.0||36.6||6th||24.4||+0.4||22.7||30th||361.4||high||149%|
|Central Arnhem Plateau AWS||32.0||36.2||3rd||23.3||20.9||30th||351.6|
|Delamere Weapons Range AWS||34.7||−1.0||39.4||6th||24.7||+0.2||20.8||29th||189.2||average||104%|
|Dum In Mirrie AWS||31.9||33.8||7th||26.2||23.4||30th||595.8||highest||228%|
|Jabiru Airport AWS||34.0||−1.0||37.3||3rd||25.1||+0.3||22.8||30th||286.2||high||131%|
|Katherine Aviation Museum||34.5||−1.6||40.0||3rd||24.3||−0.3||22.4||16th||398.9||very high||192%|
|McCluer Island AWS||31.8||34.9||9th||26.8||23.5||17th||321.0||high||158%|
|Middle Point AWS||33.7||37.1||3rd||24.2||22.4||11th||331.2|
|Pine Creek Council||33.7||37.2||3rd||24.3||21.9||15th||305.8|
|Point Fawcett AWS||31.8||−0.6||33.8||2nd||25.5||−0.2||23.3||4th||656.8||very high||239%|
|Tindal RAAF AWS||34.4||−1.2||39.8||3rd||24.9||+0.1||22.7||25th||291.4||high||149%|
|Arnhem (district 14BC)|
|Groote Eylandt Airport AWS||33.7||37.5||10th||25.3||23.3||26th||498.2|
|Maningrida Aero AWS||32.2||35.0||28th||25.6||23.9||30th||165.6|
|Roper-Mcarthur (district 14DE)|
|Centre Island AWS||34.6||0.0||38.3||16th||27.4||+0.1||24.3||31st||156.8||high||127%|
|Daly Waters AWS||35.7||−1.6||39.8||3rd||23.7||−0.5||19.7||15th||147.0||high||144%|
|McArthur River Mine||37.3||−0.5||42.0||10th||26.2||+1.3||23.2||21st||134.8||average||109%|
|Victoria (district 14F)|
|Kidman Springs||35.9||−1.5||41.5||6th||25.2||−0.2||22.5||15th||335.8||very high||250%|
|Victoria River Downs||36.2||−1.6||42.1||6th||25.3||+0.2||21.0||15th||129.2||average||110%|
|Barkly (district 15A)|
|Tennant Creek Airport||37.5||+0.2||41.7||6th||25.7||+0.8||20.9||15th||35.6||average||51%|
|Alice Springs (district 15B)|
|Alice Springs Airport||34.6||−0.7||40.9||3rd||20.9||+0.7||13.1||15th||55.8||high||149%|
|Territory Grape Farm AWS||36.4||+0.1||41.2||3rd||22.5||+1.7||15.3||14th||29.2||average||60%|
|Yulara Aero AWS||34.9||−1.5||41.3||3rd||22.0||+1.4||14.8||13th||70.2||high||172%|
This statement has been prepared based on information available at 11 am on Monday 5 January 2009. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.
Averages are long-term means based on observations from
the years 1800 to 2006.
They are not shown for sites with less than 10 years of record in that time, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.
The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of long-term average rain.
The Rank indicates how rainfall this time compares with the climate record for the site,
based on the
(very low rainfall is in decile 1, low in decile 2 or 3,
average in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9
and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of average shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.