South Australia in March 2010

Warmer in the south and above average rainfall.

  • Above average rainfall along all border areas, and over the Yorke and Eyre Peninsulas, close to average elsewhere.
  • Average to warmer than average temperatures, apart from the far north and northeast.

Rainfall

A low moving down from the Northern Territory brought widespread rain to northern and eastern parts of the state in the first week of March, with heavy rain in the far northeast. As a result, rainfall values were above average across the north and well above average in the far northeast and eastern border areas. Heavy rain also fell over Yorke, Eastern Eyre and Lower Eyre Peninsulas associated with the passage of a low pressure system in the first week of March. Some stations set new daily and monthly rainfall records for March as a result (see daily records and monthly records). Rainfall was also above average in the west. Elsewhere, rainfall was generally close to average, with pockets of below average rainfall over central parts.
So far this year, rainfall totals have been above average along border areas, parts of the Eyre Peninsula and across the northeast, with pockets of below average rainfall over central parts. Year to date rainfall totals exceed 200mm in the northeast, with heavy rainfall in February and March associated with the low pressure system approaching from the Northern Territory.

Pastoral Districts

The majority of rainfall totals recorded in the pastoral districts were average to above average, and generally ranged from 5 to 20mm. The highest monthly total of 45.2mm was recorded at Ernabella (Pukatja). In contrast, there were some isolated areas of below average rainfall in central parts, with the lowest monthly total of 0.0mm recorded at Woomera Aerodrome. This equals the lowest monthly rainfall record for March at Woomera Aerodrome, which was previously set in March 2003.

Agricultural Districts

Rainfall over the agricultural districts was generally above average. Rainfall totals were highly variable. The majority of rainfall amounts in the eastern Eyre and northern Yorke Peninsulas ranged from 20 to 70mm, the Mount Lofty ranges between 20 to 40mm, and parts of the Upper Southeast and the Murray Mallee had rainfall totals ranging from 40 to 80mm. The highest total of 125.8mm was recorded at Cleve on the Eyre Peninsula, which is the new highest total rainfall record for March at Cleve (see monthly records). The lowest of 4.5mm was recorded at Palmer in the Lower Murray Valley.

Some sites had their highest total March rainfall on record.
Some sites had their highest total March rainfall for at least 25 years.
Some sites had their lowest total March rainfall on record.
Some sites had their highest March daily rainfall on record.
See a map of rainfall deciles.

Temperature

Temperatures were generally average to above average across the state, apart from the far north and northeast where temperatures were slightly cooler than average in the cloudy conditions associated with the above average rainfall in those areas.

Maximum

Mean maximum temperatures were slightly below average in the north, but generally 1 to 2C warmer than average over southern parts. Mount Barker was close to 3C warmer than average.
Mean maximum temperatures over the pastoral districts were slightly below average in the north, grading to average in the south, and ranged from 28.8C at Yunta Airstrip in the Northeast District to 33.7C at Maree Comparison in the Far North District. The highest recorded maximum temperature in the pastoral districts for March was 39.0C at Marla Police Station on the 25th of the month, with the lowest 18.1C at Yunta Airstrip on the 6th.
Mean maximum temperatures over the agricultural districts were generally warmer than average, and ranged from 21.0C at Cape Willoughby on Kangaroo Island to 31.1C at Port Augusta Aero in the Western Agricultural District. The highest recorded daily maximum temperature for March in the agricultural areas was 38.0C at Murray Bridge Comparison on the 18th of the month, with the lowest 13.7C at Mount Lofty on the 8th.

Minimum

Mean monthly overnight minimum temperatures were generally between 1 and 2C warmer than average across southern parts of the state, and up to 1C warmer in the north.
In the pastoral districts these ranged from 13.1C at Gluepot Reserve in the Northeast District to 19.5C at Oodnadatta in the Far North District. The lowest recorded daily minimum temperature for March in the pastoral districts was 5.8C at the Gluepot Reserve in the Northeast district on the 10th of the month, with the highest being 26.0C at Oodnadatta Airport on the 17th .
Across the agricultural areas the mean minimum temperatures this month ranged from 10.3C at Naracoorte Aerodrome in the Lower Southeast District to 16.9C at Port Pirie in the Lower North District. The lowest recorded daily minimum temperature for March was 2.3C at Keith (Munkora) on the 23rd, the highest being 25C at Port Pirie on the 18th.

Further information

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Extremes in March 2010
Hottest day 39.0 °C at Marla Police Station on the 25th
Warmest days on average 33.7 °C at Marree Comparison
Coolest days on average 21.0 °C at Cape Willoughby
Coldest day 13.7 °C at Mount Lofty on the 8th
Coldest night 2.3 °C at Keith (Munkora) on the 23rd
Coolest nights on average 10.3 °C at Naracoorte Aerodrome
Warmest nights on average 19.5 °C at Oodnadatta Airport
Warmest night 26.0 °C at Oodnadatta Airport on the 17th
Wettest overall 125.8 mm at Cleve
Highest wind gust 91 km/h at Cape Willoughby on the 1st

Record highest March daily rainfall
Highest daily rainfall
in March 2010 (mm)
Previous highest
for March
Years of
record
Manoora 85.0 on the 8th 39.6 on the 16th in 1946 119
Cleve Aerodrome 54.4 on the 7th 45.7 on the 14th in 1971 47



Record highest total March rainfall
Total rainfall
for March 2010 (mm)
Previous highest
for March
Years of
record
Average for
March
Cleve 125.8 91.0 in 1983 115 21.3
Darke Peak 74.0 64.5 in 1971 96 15.8
Cleve Aerodrome 120.8 86.6 in 1983 47 21.8

Highest total March rainfall for at least 25 years
Total rainfall
for March 2010 (mm)
Most recent higher
for March
Years since
higher
Average for
March
Moonta 78.8 146.3 in 1877 133 19.1
Manoora 95.4 121.2 in 1910 100 20.8
Lock 67.4 86.5 in 1968 42 15.9
Wharminda 78.0 79.9 in 1968 42 16.3
Wallaroo 69.8 85.6 in 1971 39 19.6
Alawoona 44.0 60.8 in 1983 27 13.5
Arno Bay 85.6 92.4 in 1983 27 17.1
Karoonda 47.6 85.0 in 1983 27 16.4
Kimba 59.8 77.0 in 1983 27 16.4
Lameroo Comparison 48.0 95.8 in 1983 27 18.2
Mindarie 64.0 68.0 in 1983 27 14.6
Nildottie 39.0 48.6 in 1983 27 14.5
Parrakie 72.6 123.0 in 1983 27 18.9
Peake 86.8 91.4 in 1983 27 20.6
Pinnaroo 53.2 83.6 in 1983 27 17.8
Sandalwood 55.8 72.6 in 1983 27 15.1
Meningie 50.0 57.2 in 1984 26 22.2
Geranium 76.2 99.8 in 1983 25 19.7
Parilla 50.0 70.6 in 1983 25 15.9



Record lowest total March rainfall
Total rainfall
for March 2010 (mm)
Previous lowest
for March
Years of
record
Average for
March
Woomera Aerodrome 0.0 = 0.0 in 2003 61 13.1



Summary statistics for March 2010
Maximum temperatures
for March
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for March
(°C)
Rainfall
for March
(millimetres)
Mean for
March
2010
Diff
from
average
Highest for
March
2010
Mean for
March
2010
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
March
2010
Total for
March
2010
Average
for
March
Rank of
March
2010
Fraction of
March
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 32.4 +0.1 36.7 27th 18.7 +0.5 14.0 25th 2.2 13.7 average 16%
Coober Pedy Airport 32.0   37.5 28th 18.5   12.2 8th 1.6
Ernabella (Pukatja) 30.2   36.6 28th 17.2   12.9 12th 45.2
Marla Police Station 32.5 -0.3 39.0 25th 18.5 +0.8 10.1 12th 10.0 23.5 average 43%
Nonning 29.9 +0.5 35.8 17th 15.3 +1.0 10.0 10th 11.8 14.5 average 81%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 32.4   36.2 27th 18.1   9.9 25th 6.4
Tarcoola Aero 32.3   37.8 20th 17.2   11.6 30th 2.6
Woomera Aerodrome 31.5 +1.1 36.8 27th 17.6 +0.8 12.2 8th 0 13.1 lowest 0%
Far North (district 17)
Arkaroola 29.5 -0.5 35.3 27th 15.9 +0.1 10.0 24th 9.1 28.7 average 32%
Leigh Creek Airport 31.6 +0.3 35.8 27th 18.0 +0.7 13.1 25th 1.2 16.2 average 7%
Marree Aero 33.1   37.4 21st 19.0   14.4 25th 4.6
Marree Comparison 33.7 -0.2 38.0 27th 19.0 +1.0 14.5 7th 4.6 13.9 average 33%
Moomba Airport 31.5   35.6 5th 18.7   13.9 11th 9.0
Oodnadatta Airport 33.4 -0.3 37.5 28th 19.5 +0.3 12.8 12th 16.8 12.2 high 138%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 28.6 +1.9 38.0 26th 15.0 +1.9 7.7 31st 7.2 16.3 average 44%
Cleve 26.1 +0.2 34.5 26th 16.2 +1.5 11.4 7th 125.8 21.3 highest 591%
Cleve Aerodrome 26.0   34.8 17th 15.8   11.5 7th 120.8 21.8 highest 554%
Coulta (Coles Point) 26.1   33.3 17th 14.8   10.1 23rd 27.2
Cummins Aero 27.4   35.7 17th 14.1   6.0 30th 28.2
Elliston 25.5 +1.4 34.3 17th 15.2 +1.0 9.4 30th 38.8 15.0 high 259%
Kimba 28.0 +0.1 34.2 25th 15.0 +1.0 10.2 7th 59.8 16.4 v high 365%
Kyancutta 29.5 -0.4 35.8 17th 13.5 +1.2 8.2 31st 48.6 14.2 v high 342%
Minnipa DPI 29.7   36.2 26th 14.9   8.8 10th 11.8
Neptune Island 21.8 +0.7 26.6 25th 16.6 +0.7 13.5 6th 27.2 19.1 high 142%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 24.4   34.6 25th 15.4   10.1 25th 69.4
Nullarbor 26.4 -0.3 37.6 25th 15.4 +1.3 9.6 13th 31.4 22.0 high 143%
Port Augusta Aero 31.1   37.4 18th 16.8   11.5 25th 18.0
Streaky Bay 28.9 +1.7 35.8 25th 15.8 +1.1 10.5 10th 22.6 14.7 high 154%
Whyalla Aero 28.3 +1.0 37.0 18th 16.1 +0.7 10.5 31st 9.8 18.5 average 53%
Wudinna Aero 30.0   36.8 17th 14.3   7.2 11th 37.2
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker 30.2 0.0 35.0 27th 15.6 +0.7 10.1 11th 7.2 16.0 average 45%
Yongala 28.1 +0.9 34.3 27th 11.1 +0.4 4.9 10th 13.4 16.1 average 83%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 29.7   36.4 17th 13.1   5.8 10th 14.1
Yunta Airstrip 28.8   35.1 19th 13.7   7.5 11th 13.8
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 27.0   34.6 17th 13.1   6.6 23rd 26.4
Port Pirie Aerodrome 29.9   36.4 17th 14.9   9.6 11th 28.5
Port Pirie Nyrstar Comparison 29.9 +0.5 36.5 17th 16.9 +0.9 11.5 10th 21.6 17.9 high 121%
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 29.0   35.7 18th 12.8   6.9 23rd 12.8
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 24.1   33.7 25th 15.7   8.8 25th 11.0
Kadina AWS 28.6   36.0 17th 14.0   8.4 11th 109.6
Maitland 26.7 +0.8 34.5 17th 15.7 +1.3 10.4 11th 51.6 20.9 high 247%
Minlaton Aero 27.0   33.9 17th 14.7   9.8 23rd 27.6
Stenhouse Bay 23.3   32.6 25th 16.3   13.5 7th 11.8
Warooka 25.6 +0.5 32.5 17th 15.3 +0.7 12.0 10th 27.6 16.1 high 171%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 23.0   29.7 17th 14.3   10.0 23rd 32.0
Cape Willoughby 21.0 +0.3 27.1 25th 16.1 +0.6 13.9 2nd 28.4 21.2 high 134%
Kingscote Aero 25.7   33.5 25th 11.1   5.4 23rd 11.2
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (Kent Town) 27.7 +1.4 36.0 17th 16.2 +1.0 10.4 23rd 19.0 25.1 average 75%
Adelaide Airport 26.7 +1.3 35.0 17th 15.3 +1.0 8.4 23rd 20.0 20.8 average 96%
Edinburgh RAAF 28.3 +1.4 36.0 18th 15.5 +1.1 9.1 23rd 24.4 23.5 average 104%
Parafield Airport 28.6 +1.8 36.0 17th 14.7 +0.1 8.9 30th 34.8 21.3 high 163%
Roseworthy AWS 29.1   36.7 17th 13.7   7.7 22nd 19.8
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa Viticultural 27.1   34.3 17th 13.1   8.1 10th 18.0
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 28.9 +1.6 36.8 17th 13.6 +0.3 5.9 23rd 17.0 19.9 average 85%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 24.3   34.8 18th 14.3   9.3 11th 23.4
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 24.3   32.8 17th 13.6   8.2 11th 27.2
Mount Barker 27.4 +2.8 34.3 17th 11.0 +0.6 5.9 23rd 20.4 31.0 average 66%
Mount Crawford (Mt Crawford AWS) 25.0   31.5 18th 12.9   6.7 11th 17.4
Mount Lofty 22.6   30.1 17th 12.4   6.2 2nd 38.4
Noarlunga 26.3   34.7 17th 15.8   9.7 11th 18.2
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 22.1   31.3 17th 13.9   9.9 23rd 38.6
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 23.9   33.9 18th 12.6   6.8 16th 23.4
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 29.0 +0.8 35.9 17th 12.9 +1.1 6.2 8th 30.2 11.3 high 267%
Renmark Aero 29.4   36.0 26th 14.1   9.0 10th 31.0
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 27.1 +1.5 34.5 17th 13.3 +1.2 7.9 23rd 14.2 20.2 average 70%
Meningie 25.7 +1.5 34.2 18th 12.3 -0.2 7.4 11th 50.0 22.2 v high 225%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 28.2   37.6 17th 12.2   7.1 31st 11.0
Murray Bridge Comparison 28.7 +2.0 38.0 18th 13.4 +0.6 9.0 11th 14.1 19.8 average 71%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 26.8   35.3 18th 12.8   8.1 23rd 18.0
Murray Mallee (district 25A)
Karoonda 28.1   36.5 18th 12.8   7.8 23rd 47.6 16.4 v high 290%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 27.5 +0.6 35.2 17th 12.3 +0.9 5.0 23rd 28.4 21.0 high 135%
Keith (Munkora) 28.0   36.1 17th 11.0   2.3 23rd 34.0
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 27.8   36.0 17th 12.7   6.3 23rd 42.0
Lameroo Comparison 27.9 +0.3 35.6 17th 13.7 +2.2 7.4 23rd 48.0 18.2 v high 264%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 22.3   29.7 17th 12.7   8.6 22nd 37.8
Coonawarra 25.9 +0.9 33.1 15th 10.7 +0.7 3.1 22nd 20.6 27.2 average 76%
Mount Gambier Aero 24.5 +1.4 32.6 4th 11.2 +0.7 4.3 31st 19.4 34.9 low 56%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 26.7   34.2 15th 10.3   4.1 22nd 27.2
Padthaway South 26.6   33.9 17th 11.0   3.6 22nd 29.8
Robe Airfield 22.9   30.0 14th 10.8   3.1 22nd 27.6
Robe Comparison 21.4 +0.3 27.0 13th 13.3 +0.6 9.1 11th 28.8 26.6 average 108%

Notes

A Monthly Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in South Australia using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. Later information, including data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review, usually published in the fourth week of the month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 1 pm on Thursday 1 April 2010. 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 all available years of record, which vary widely from site to site. They are not shown for sites with less than 20 years of record, 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 decile ranking (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.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries