South Australia in March 2015: Below average rainfall with cool temperatures across southern districts

A lack of tropical activity feeding moisture across South Australia throughout the month saw the statewide average rainfall during March come in at 87% below the historical average, resulting in the driest March for South Australia since 2005, with several sites across the state having their lowest total March rainfall in 20 years. Rainfall was very much below average across central and eastern agricultural districts as well as through central and northeastern parts of pastoral districts. Monthly totals were highest across the lower southeast coast of the state, with several locations observing 10 to 25 mm for the month; about 80% of what would be expected through March.

A southwesterly airstream dominated weather for much of the month across the southern parts of the state, which led to a lack of very warm days throughout the month, and a relatively mild month as a whole. While the statewide average daytime temperature was 0.37 °C above average, days were generally cooler than average across much of the agricultural districts, particularly across the southeast of the state where days were 1 to 2 °C cooler than average.

The monthly mean minimum temperature was 0.42 °C below average for the state as a whole, resulting in the coolest March nights for South Australia since 2012. Nights were coolest across most of the agricultural half of the state, tending closer to average across most of the pastoral areas while the far northeast and far northwest pastoral districts saw above average minimum temperatures.

  • Driest March in 10 years for South Australia
  • Very dry across eastern districts of the state
  • Cool days and nights across agricultural districts

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries

Extremes in March 2015
Hottest day 45.4 °C at Moomba Airport on the 19th
Warmest days on average 34.4 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest days on average 19.9 °C at Mount Lofty
Coldest day 12.2 °C at Mount Lofty on the 24th
Coldest night 1.8 °C at Mount Gambier Aero on the 21st
1.8 °C at Naracoorte Aerodrome on the 21st
Coolest nights on average 8.3 °C at Coonawarra
Warmest nights on average 20.1 °C at Moomba Airport
Warmest night 27.8 °C at Moomba Airport on the 20th
Warmest on average overall 27.2 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest on average overall 14.9 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 39.2 mm at Mount Gambier Council Depot
Wettest day 13.6 mm at Parawa (Sharon) on the 24th
Strongest wind gust 98 km/h at Sellicks Hill (Mount Terrible Radar) on the 30th

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 March total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Clare High School 4.0 4.5 in 2003 21 25.6
Mount Crawford (Mt Crawford AWS) 7.4 9.0 in 2005 21 29.7
Nangwarry Forestry SA Depot 13.2 16.2 in 2008 21 34.4
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 5.4 6.0 in 1996 21 38.0

Lowest March total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Years since
lower
Average for
March
Parafield Airport 3.6 0.8 in 1990* 23 22.5
Adelaide (Glen Osmond) 8.2 0.0 in 1994 21 26.5
Adelaide (Hope Valley Reservoir) 0.2 0.0 in 1994 21 29.6
Adelaide (Kent Town) 2.4 0.0 in 1994 21 26.4
Adelaide Airport 2.6 0.0 in 1994 21 21.8
Arno Bay 2.0 0.0 in 1994 21 17.5
Burra Community School 0.2 0.0 in 1994 21 18.1
Cudlee Creek (Millbrook Reservoir) 1.2 0.0 in 1994 21 30.3
Gladstone 1.4 0.0 in 1994 21 19.1
Karoonda 1.4 0.0 in 1994 21 17.4
Laura 3.5 0.0 in 1994 21 20.5
Longwood 4.6 0.0 in 1994 21 37.7
Marrabel 1.4 0.0 in 1994 21 22.1
Mintaro 3.4 =3.4 in 1991* 21 22.8
Moonta 1.2 0.0 in 1994 21 19.3
Mount Schank (Jethia) 13.6 1.8 in 1994 21 37.1
North Adelaide 2.2 0.0 in 1994 21 25.3
Point Pass 1.8 0.0 in 1994 21 18.5
Port Elliot Caravan Park 1.0 0.0 in 1994 21 22.2
Spalding 0.8 0.0 in 1994 21 18.0
Tanunda 4.0 0.0 in 1994 21 24.6
Tarlee 0.8 0.0 in 1994 21 20.7
Whyte Yarcowie 0.6 0.0 in 1994 21 17.4
Wirrabara Forest 2.0 0.0 in 1994 21 28.0
Wrattonbully (Joeville) 3.6 0.5 in 1994 21 30.4
Angaston 1.6 0.0 in 1994* 20 23.7
Auburn 1.8 0.0 in 1994* 20 26.2
Blyth 0.8 0.0 in 1994* 20 19.1
Crystal Brook 0.4 0.0 in 1994* 20 17.9
Echunga Golf Course 5.6 0.0 in 1994* 20 31.8
Farrell Flat 1.2 0.0 in 1994* 20 18.6
Georgetown 1.6 0.0 in 1994* 20 20.4
Gulnare 1.2 0.0 in 1994* 20 18.5
Heathfield Works Depot 4.4 0.0 in 1994* 20 40.2
Kalangadoo 14.0 1.0 in 1994* 20 33.8
Parrakie 2.2 1.6 in 1995 20 19.6
Port Parham 1.6 0.0 in 1994* 20 19.7
Port Wakefield 1.8 0.0 in 1994* 20 19.4
Robertstown 0.4 0.0 in 1994* 20 15.9
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 2.4 0.0 in 1994* 20 20.2
Roseworthy 2.8 0.0 in 1994* 20 21.3
Tumby Bay 2.0 0.0 in 1994* 20 14.7

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a lower value has gone unreported.




Record highest March temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Moomba Airport 45.4 on the 19th 45.2 on the 3rd in 2009 20 33.8



Record lowest March temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Warooka 7.6 on the 26th 8.0 on the 31st in 1970 51 14.7
Hawker 4.5 on the 27th 5.1 on the 28th in 2008 42 14.9



Record lowest March mean daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Coonawarra 8.3 = 8.3 in 1991 29 10.1

Lowest March mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Years since
lower
Average for
March
Mount Gambier Aero 9.4 8.4 in 1972 43 10.5
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 13.4 13.0 in 1995 20 14.6



Summary statistics for March 2015
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
March
2015
Diff
from
average
Highest for
March
2015
Mean for
March
2015
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
March
2015
Total for
March
2015
Average
for
March
Rank of
March
2015
Fraction of
March
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 31.5 -0.7 41.9 19th 17.6 -0.6 11.5 27th 1.6 13.5 average 12%
Coober Pedy Airport 32.1 +0.5 40.8 16th 17.5 -0.8 11.1 27th 1.4 9.0 average 16%
Ernabella (Pukatja) 32.8 +1.8 41.9 19th 18.6 +1.4 12.9 24th 0.8 27.6 low 3%
Marla Police Station 32.9 +0.2 41.3 16th 17.2 -0.6 12.0 28th 0.8 22.5 average 4%
Mount Ive 29.4   35.5 14th 12.7   3.9 27th 1.0 13.8 average 7%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 31.7 -0.3 41.8 19th 16.1 -0.8 6.7 28th 1.4 7.1 low 20%
Tarcoola Aero 31.6 +0.1 40.5 16th 14.7 -1.4 7.2 24th 0.6 14.2 average 4%
Woomera Aerodrome 29.9 -0.5 37.6 16th 16.2 -0.6 9.5 26th 0 13.3 lowest 0%
Far North (district 17)
Arkaroola 29.9 +0.1 40.5 19th 14.5 -1.3 6.3 28th 0.3 30.7 low 1%
Leigh Creek Airport 31.5 +0.3 40.9 19th 16.5 -0.9 9.9 27th 1.2 19.1 average 6%
Marree Aero 33.8 +0.3 43.4 19th 17.4 -1.3 9.9 28th 0 8.7 v low 0%
Moomba Airport 34.4 +0.6 45.4 19th 20.1 -0.2 12.8 27th 0 22.5 v low 0%
Oodnadatta Airport 33.9 +0.2 44.7 19th 18.9 -0.4 10.9 28th 0.8 13.8 average 6%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 26.4 -0.3 39.5 16th 12.3 -0.9 4.5 27th 3.8 16.1 average 24%
Cleve 25.1 -0.8 35.3 16th 13.5 -1.2 8.0 26th 3.4 21.5 low 16%
Cleve Aerodrome 25.3 -0.7 36.0 16th 12.9 -1.6 8.0 26th 1.4 21.8 low 6%
Coulta (Coles Point) 23.7 -1.5 35.9 16th 13.4 -0.4 8.1 11th 5.8 20.7 low 28%
Cummins Aero 25.8   38.1 16th 10.9   3.0 26th 1.4
Elliston 23.9 -0.3 36.0 22nd 13.7 -0.6 6.5 11th 6.8 15.0 average 45%
Kimba 27.3 -0.5 35.0 16th 12.2 -1.8 6.0 27th 2.0 16.7 low 12%
Kyancutta 29.0 -0.8 37.9 16th 11.0 -1.3 1.9 27th 0.3 14.4 low 2%
Minnipa Pirsa 27.7 -0.9 36.3 16th 12.4 -1.7 6.3 24th 0.8 21.1 v low 4%
Neptune Island 20.7 -0.4 23.7 18th 15.9 -0.1 12.5 26th 8.2 19.6 average 42%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 24.4 +0.2 38.3 16th 13.4 -1.2 9.2 25th 4.6 20.4 low 23%
Nullarbor 27.1 +0.5 41.1 15th 13.3 -0.9 7.2 27th 12.0 21.5 average 56%
Port Augusta Aero 29.7 -0.7 37.6 19th 16.0 -0.4 10.0 25th 0 17.0 v low 0%
Streaky Bay 25.9 -1.3 33.9 18th 14.1 -0.6 9.6 27th 3.2 14.9 low 21%
Whyalla Aero 26.2 -1.0 36.6 16th 15.2 -0.3 8.7 25th 5.0 19.4 low 26%
Wudinna Aero 28.6 -0.7 37.8 16th 10.7 -2.2 2.2 27th 0.4 18.6 v low 2%
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker 29.9 -0.2 39.1 19th 13.8 -1.1 4.5 27th 0 16.5 lowest 0%
Yongala 26.1 -1.0 34.8 19th 10.1 -0.7 4.1 27th 1.2 16.3 low 7%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 28.5 -0.7 39.6 19th 10.8 -1.4 4.0 22nd 0 15.5 v low 0%
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 25.0 -1.0 31.8 16th 11.3 -0.8 4.4 25th 4.0 25.6 lowest 16%
Port Pirie Aerodrome AWS 27.9   34.6 16th 13.4   4.9 27th 1.4
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 27.3 -1.2 34.5 16th 11.1 -0.9 4.7 25th 2.6 18.9 v low 14%
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 23.2 -0.3 28.4 22nd 14.5 -1.2 7.7 11th 2.6 18.2 v low 14%
Kadina AWS 26.3   33.8 16th 11.2   5.4 28th 1.0 34.6 v low 3%
Maitland 25.0 -0.9 32.0 16th 13.6 -0.9 9.1 26th 6.8 20.9 low 33%
Minlaton Aero 24.8 -1.9 34.3 16th 12.4 -1.6 7.7 11th 4.4 17.7 v low 25%
Stenhouse Bay 22.9 -0.4 31.0 31st 14.9 -1.1 10.4 25th 9.0 21.5 low 42%
Warooka 24.1 -1.0 30.4 16th 13.3 -1.4 7.6 26th 11.2 16.6 average 67%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 20.8 -1.8 25.6 22nd 12.3 -1.3 8.4 21st 11.8 25.8 low 46%
Cape Willoughby 20.8 +0.1 26.9 22nd 15.1 -0.5 11.1 26th 9.2 21.4 average 43%
Kingscote Aero 24.1 -0.4 30.6 14th 9.6 -1.6 2.9 21st 6.0 25.8 low 23%
Parndana Cfs AWS 22.6   29.1 31st 10.7   5.8 11th 11.2
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (Kent Town) 25.5 -0.9 33.6 16th 14.5 -0.8 9.2 28th 2.4 26.4 low 9%
Adelaide Airport 24.1 -1.4 33.1 16th 14.3 -0.1 8.5 28th 2.6 21.8 low 12%
Edinburgh RAAF 25.5 -1.4 34.2 16th 13.6 -0.9 8.1 28th 10.4 25.6 average 41%
Parafield Airport 25.8 -1.0 33.7 16th 13.5 -1.1 7.3 28th 3.6 22.5 low 16%
Roseworthy AWS 26.4 -1.8 33.7 16th 11.5 -1.3 6.0 25th 3.6 18.1 v low 20%
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa Viticultural 24.8 -1.0 30.7 22nd 10.3 -1.6 3.8 26th 8.0 28.1 low 28%
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 26.1 -1.2 34.2 16th 12.1 -1.2 5.2 26th 2.4 20.2 low 12%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 23.2 -0.9 31.9 16th 13.7 -0.6 8.8 22nd 19.2 16.7 average 115%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 22.0 -1.1 30.4 16th 11.7 -1.0 8.2 28th 17.0 37.3 v low 46%
Mount Barker 24.3 -0.3 32.4 16th 10.4 0.0 5.6 22nd 12.4 31.4 low 39%
Mount Crawford (Mt Crawford AWS) 22.6 -0.6 30.7 16th 10.8 -1.3 7.0 28th 7.4 29.7 lowest 25%
Mount Lofty 19.9 +0.9 28.6 16th 9.8 -1.2 6.3 26th 21.2
Noarlunga 23.7 -2.0 32.4 16th 14.6 -0.9 11.1 24th 10.4 22.4 low 46%
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 23.2 -0.4 30.3 16th 11.9 -0.9 4.6 22nd 11.2 20.7 low 54%
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 27.5 -0.7 38.6 19th 11.4 -0.7 5.1 28th 0.4 12.4 low 3%
Renmark Aero 28.3 -0.5 40.4 19th 11.7 -1.1 4.6 28th 0.4 12.7 low 3%
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 25.1 -0.5 30.9 19th 11.1 -1.1 6.8 25th 4.8 20.7 low 23%
Meningie 23.5 -0.8 32.2 16th 12.2 -0.4 7.2 21st 8.0 22.2 low 36%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 25.9   32.8 14th 10.7   3.1 22nd 12.4 22.9 average 54%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 24.4 -0.8 32.1 16th 12.3 -0.3 7.6 13th 9.6 18.9 low 51%
Murray Mallee (district 25A)
Karoonda 26.2 -1.5 32.6 19th 11.1 -0.9 5.4 28th 1.4 17.4 low 8%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 24.8 -2.1 31.0 31st 10.2 -1.3 4.5 13th 10.8 21.2 average 51%
Keith (Munkora) 25.3 -2.2 30.8 22nd 9.0 -1.1 2.9 22nd 8.4 18.6 low 45%
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 26.2 -1.7 33.5 19th 10.4 -1.5 5.5 26th 0.8 20.2 v low 4%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 21.1 -1.6 27.7 16th 11.6 -0.8 6.2 14th 14.6 22.3 low 65%
Coonawarra 23.1 -1.9 30.1 22nd 8.3 -1.8 2.1 21st 15.6 26.4 average 59%
Mount Gambier Aero 22.0 -1.2 29.3 22nd 9.4 -1.1 1.8 21st 28.8 35.3 average 82%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 24.1 -2.0 30.2 22nd 8.4 -1.5 1.8 21st 8.8 24.8 low 35%
Padthaway South 23.9 -2.0 30.4 22nd 8.8 -1.5 3.3 21st 12.2 24.5 low 50%
Robe Airfield 21.5 -1.7 27.4 16th 10.0 -1.1 1.9 21st 22.8 28.4 average 80%

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.

A Climate Summary is generally published on the first working day of each month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 12 pm on Wednesday 1 April 2015. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

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.

The ACORN-SAT dataset is used for temperature area averages.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries