South Australia in February 2021: wet in the west, cool days

Rainfall in February was above to very much above average in the Northwest Pastoral district and along the southern coasts, but was below average across parts of the state's east. Both daytime and night-time temperatures were cooler than average across large parts of the state, with below average monthly temperatures extending from from western districts to the Murraylands. It was South Australia's overall coolest February since 2012.

Wet in the west, dry in the east

  • Rainfall in February was above to very much above average in the Northwest Pastoral district and along the southern coasts, but below average in parts of the eastern Pastoral and central districts.
  • Rainfall for South Australia as a whole was 8% above average.
  • The wettest site in the state was Ernabella (Pukatja), which recorded 141.6 mm for the month, including 109.4 mm in the 24 hours to 9am on the 12th.
  • A low pressure trough and cold front brought heavy rain to parts of outback South Australia on the 11th and 12th, with flooding affecting transport in the Pastoral districts.

Coolest February since 2012

  • Daytime temperatures in February were below average over much of South Australia, with the far north-east the only region with above average mean maximum temperatures.
  • The mean maximum temperature for South Australia as a whole was 0.52 °C below average, the lowest since 2012.
  • Early in the month, several sites had their coldest February day on record.
  • On the 24th and 25th, Marree Aero and Clare High School respectively had their lowest February temperature on record.
  • Low-intensity heatwave conditions affected the southern half of South Australia during the third week of February, with locally severe heatwave conditions on the Eyre Peninsula.
  • The highest temperature recorded during February was 43.7 °C at Port Augusta Aero on the 11th.
  • Night-time temperatures were below average across many central and eastern districts, but close to average elsewhere.
  • The state's mean minimum temperature was 0.69 °C below average, the lowest since 2012.
  • The lowest temperature recorded during the month was 3.5 °C at Naracoorte Aerodrome on the 24th.
  • Heatwave conditions affected the state at times and on the 19th, Wudinna Aero had its warmest February night on record
  • The overall mean temperature for South Australia as a whole was 0.60 °C below average, the lowest since 2012.

Further information

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Extremes in February 2021
Hottest day 43.7 °C at Port Augusta Aero on the 11th
Warmest days on average 36.4 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest days on average 21.3 °C at Cape Willoughby
Coldest day 13.2 °C at Mount Lofty on the 5th
Coldest night 3.2 °C at Keith (Munkora) on the 25th
Coolest nights on average 10.7 °C at Naracoorte Aerodrome
Warmest nights on average 22.8 °C at Moomba Airport
Warmest night 31.8 °C at Moomba Airport on the 12th
Warmest on average overall 29.6 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest on average overall 17.0 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 141.6 mm at Ernabella (Pukatja)
Wettest day 109.4 mm at Ernabella (Pukatja) on the 12th
Strongest wind gust 115 km/h at Neptune Island on the 5th

Maps
ObservedAnomalyDecile rank
Total
rainfall
Map of Rainfall totals Map of Percentage of normal rainfall Map of Rainfall deciles
Mean
daily
maximum
temperatures
Map of Mean maximum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature
Mean
daily
minimum
temperatures
Map of Mean minimum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean minimum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature

Click on a map to show it full size in a pop-up window


Record lowest February daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Coober Pedy Airport 18.2 on the 12th = 18.2 on the 6th in 2011 27 35.5
Stenhouse Bay 17.4 on the 4th 17.7 on the 27th in 1996 26 24.8
Minnipa PIRSA 17.7 on the 4th 17.9 on the 29th in 2012 25 32.3
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 15.4 on the 5th 15.5 on the 29th in 2012 23 25.7



Record highest February daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Wudinna Aero 29.2 on the 19th 29.0 on the 19th in 2000 22 15.1



Record lowest February temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Clare High School 5.1 on the 25th 5.8 on the 14th in 2019 27 14.9
Marree Aero 12.7 on the 24th 13.1 on the 29th in 2008 23 22.1



Summary statistics for February 2021
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
February
2021
Diff
from
average
Highest for
February
2021
Mean for
February
2021
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
February
2021
Total for
February
2021
Average
for
February
Rank of
February
2021
Fraction of
February
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 33.9 -1.7 41.5 11th 20.0 -1.2 14.3 5th 8.0 22.7 average 35%
Coober Pedy Airport 33.4 -2.1 41.5 10th 19.2 -2.3 13.2 5th 47.4 15.4 high 308%
Ernabella (Pukatja) 32.5 -2.3 38.4 9th 19.7 -0.7 13.4 25th 141.6 32.0 high 443%
Mount Ive 31.4   40.5 10th       8.4 13.5 average 62%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 33.6 -2.2 42.2 20th 18.8 -1.4 12.8 5th 10.0 16.5 average 61%
Tarcoola Aero 33.5 -1.8 42.0 10th 17.1 -2.0 10.7 25th 3.2 22.2 average 14%
Woomera Aerodrome 32.7 -1.1 40.8 20th 18.0 -1.4 12.3 5th 0 19.3 lowest 0%
Far North (district 17)
Arkaroola 31.5 -1.8 40.1 11th 18.8 -0.6 12.5 27th 3.8 37.5 average 10%
Leigh Creek Airport 32.6 -2.1 41.6 11th 18.7 -1.7 13.7 5th 18.2 26.3 average 69%
Marree Aero 35.7 -1.4 43.6 11th 19.9 -2.2 12.7 24th 6.4 25.3 average 25%
Moomba Airport 36.4 -0.7 42.6 11th 22.8 -0.9 15.0 6th 1.0 24.2 average 4%
Oodnadatta Airport 36.0 -0.7 42.2 10th 21.1 -1.2 15.0 25th 22.0 29.5 average 75%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 27.1 -1.2 42.5 10th 15.1 0.0 8.7 27th 13.4 14.0 average 96%
Cleve 26.5 -1.2 38.2 17th 16.2 +0.1 10.5 5th 21.8 22.4 average 97%
Cleve Aerodrome 27.1 -1.3 39.3 18th 15.6 -0.6 10.6 5th 18.2 18.7 average 97%
Coffin Bay (Point Avoid) 24.2   37.1 18th 15.3   10.9 24th 33.8
Cultana (Defence) 31.0   40.8 11th 16.6   10.6 5th 0.6
Cummins Aero 27.8 -1.4 40.6 18th 13.9 -1.3 5.8 25th 36.0 22.7 high 159%
Elliston 26.0 +0.3 41.4 18th 15.9 0.0 10.4 25th 28.4 13.7 high 207%
Kimba 29.5 -1.6 40.0 10th 14.1 -1.9 8.0 5th 13.2 20.8 average 63%
Kyancutta 31.8 -0.6 42.2 10th 14.4 0.0 8.0 24th 12.9 16.1 average 80%
Minnipa PIRSA 29.9 -2.4 40.6 10th 15.1 -0.9 9.8 24th 16.2 14.7 average 110%
Neptune Island 21.6 -0.6 29.3 17th 16.3 -0.4 13.7 5th 25.0 14.1 high 177%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 24.6 -1.3 36.3 18th 15.1 -1.1 9.8 25th 23.2 15.8 high 147%
Nullarbor 26.7 -1.1 43.5 10th 15.4 -0.6 10.3 5th 8.8 14.5 average 61%
Port Augusta Aero 32.1 -1.0 43.7 11th 18.0 -0.8 10.8 5th 0.6 17.9 low 3%
Streaky Bay 27.0 -2.1 40.2 10th 15.2 -0.9 10.3 25th 19.3 14.8 high 130%
Whyalla Aero 28.8 -0.8 41.4 11th 16.9 -0.9 11.4 5th 2.4 23.1 low 10%
Wudinna Aero 31.0 -1.7 41.4 10th 14.5 -0.6 6.7 24th 15.6 14.6 average 107%
Upper North (district 19)
Yongala 30.1 0.0 37.7 11th 13.1 -0.3 6.0 23rd 1.6 21.1 low 8%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 31.3 -1.4 40.9 11th 13.8 -1.5 7.8 23rd 4.0 21.8 average 18%
Yunta Airstrip 30.6 -1.8 39.4 11th 14.5 -1.4 9.0 25th 0 19.2 lowest 0%
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 28.2 -1.5 37.1 11th 13.2 -1.7 5.1 25th 10.6 25.3 average 42%
Port Pirie Aerodrome AWS 31.1   40.8 11th 15.9   8.7 25th 4.2
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 30.3 -1.6 39.4 17th 13.4 -1.0 6.8 25th 7.6 19.3 average 39%
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 24.9 -0.2 38.8 11th 16.5 -0.6 9.6 5th 18.2 18.1 average 101%
Kadina AWS 28.6 -2.2 37.4 17th 14.8 -0.3 9.3 24th 23.0 13.8 high 167%
Minlaton Aero 27.3 -1.3 37.1 17th 14.8 -0.4 8.9 25th 31.8 18.9 high 168%
Stenhouse Bay 23.8 -1.0 38.9 18th 16.4 -0.7 12.3 5th 40.6 18.8 high 216%
Warooka 25.9 -1.1 37.6 17th 15.7 -0.3 10.5 25th 39.0 17.5 high 223%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 22.5 -1.9 33.3 17th 14.4 0.0 10.5 23rd 49.6 18.8 high 264%
Cape Willoughby 21.3 -0.5 34.0 18th 16.1 -0.2 12.4 5th 28.0 18.4 high 152%
Kingscote Aero 24.9 -1.6 36.3 17th 12.5 -1.1 6.3 25th 45.8 19.3 high 237%
Parndana CFS AWS 24.4   37.2 17th 12.9   8.1 23rd 55.4 24.4 high 227%
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 27.1 -1.4 37.9 17th 16.0 -0.9 10.7 25th 25.8 20.6 high 125%
Adelaide Airport 26.3 -1.8 38.0 18th 16.0 -0.2 11.6 25th 18.6 18.8 average 99%
Edinburgh RAAF 28.2 -1.8 38.7 11th 15.7 -0.9 9.1 25th 20.4 18.0 average 113%
Parafield Airport 28.5 -0.9 39.0 17th 15.1 -1.3 9.0 25th 26.8 18.8 high 143%
Roseworthy AWS 29.3 -1.8 40.8 11th 13.4 -1.4 5.6 25th 16.2 19.6 average 83%
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa PIRSA 27.5 -1.9 37.7 11th 12.7 -1.8 5.0 25th 20.4 24.8 average 82%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 24.6 0.0 38.5 17th 15.3 -0.5 10.9 8th 18.4 17.4 average 106%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 23.7 -2.0 35.3 17th 13.1 -1.1 9.3 25th 50.6 25.3 high 200%
Mount Barker 26.0 -0.8 36.1 17th 12.2 +0.2 6.8 25th 34.6 25.9 high 134%
Mount Crawford AWS 24.8 -2.2 34.3 19th 12.5 -1.6 7.2 24th 33.6 25.8 high 130%
Mount Lofty 22.4 -0.1 33.0 17th 11.6 -1.3 6.4 24th 38.8* 39.4
Noarlunga 26.5 -1.2 36.8 18th 16.0 -0.9 10.4 25th 39.8 19.7 high 202%
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 21.9 -1.4 34.3 18th 13.5 -0.4 9.9 25th 32.2 30.8 average 105%
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 24.3 +0.1 37.6 18th 13.6 -1.0 8.7 25th 35.2 25.0 high 141%
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 30.4 -1.0 40.3 11th 13.6 -1.0 9.5 24th 3.0 18.0 average 17%
Renmark Aero 31.0 -1.7 41.9 11th 14.6 -1.5 10.2 24th 2.6 18.9 average 14%
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 28.1 -1.0 38.1 11th     7.8 5th 10.8 22.3 average 48%
Meningie 25.4 -0.9 38.0 17th 13.9 -0.1 8.4 27th 26.0 17.4 high 149%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 27.8 -1.9 39.0 19th 13.2 -1.1 9.5 25th 13.8 18.9 average 73%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 26.1 -1.3 38.3 17th 13.5 -1.1 8.6 25th 26.0 21.7 average 120%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 28.6 -1.3 38.2 17th 12.3 -0.9 5.8 8th 34.8 20.3 high 171%
Keith (Munkora) 28.9 -1.2 39.0 11th 11.2 -0.7 3.2 25th 30.8 14.3 v high 215%
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 29.5 -1.5 39.2 19th 12.1 -1.6 5.9 25th 20.8 14.9 average 140%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 23.3 -1.1 35.4 17th 13.2 -0.5 8.4 24th 32.0 17.8 high 180%
Coonawarra 26.8 -0.7 36.6 19th 11.1 -0.8 3.9 24th 28.2 18.4 high 153%
Mount Gambier Aero 25.0 -0.3 36.8 17th 11.6 -0.2 6.3 25th 28.4 26.6 average 107%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 28.0 -1.2 38.4 11th 10.7 -1.2 3.5 24th 33.4 18.9 high 177%
Padthaway South 27.6 -1.0 37.8 11th 11.7 -0.7 5.4 23rd 50.4 18.4 v high 274%
Robe 22.3 -0.3 33.4 18th 14.0 +0.3 8.3 24th 37.7 19.0 high 198%
Robe Airfield 23.6 -0.7 34.5 18th 12.5 -0.4 4.4 24th 41.6 23.6 high 176%

* note: a blocked rain gauge at Mount Lofty around the 6th means the monthly rainfall total is under-reported.


Notes

The Monthly climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each month, lists 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. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 10 am on Monday 1 March 2021. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites 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 10 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.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

Climate