Tasmania in February 2016: warm, with near-average rain

The last month of summer was mostly warm for Tasmania, but there were cool days in the second half of the month. Rainfall was close to average for much of the State.

  • Temperatures above average by day and by night
  • Many mild days, with only a few cool days
  • Rainfall close to average in the west, below average in the east

Temperatures in Tasmania were above average for most of February, although the month ended on a cool note. Mean daily maximum and minimum temperatures for the month were above average at all sites, typically by between one and two degrees. There were two main bursts of hot weather, one on the 2nd and another on the 23rd, although this was the first February since 2006 when it did not reach 35 °C somewhere in Tasmania. The morning of the 24th was especially warm (a February record on Flinders Island). A cold outbreak brought snow to the highlands on the 16th (and a February record cold day on the Hartz Mountains), and there was more cool weather following cold fronts on the 24th and 28th. Taken across the State, the mean maximum temperature was 0.79 °C above average and the mean minimum temperature was 1.97 °C above average (the sixth-warmest on record), giving an overall mean that was 1.38 °C above average (ninth-warmest). This month was markedly warmer than February 2015.

There was little rain for the first half of February, with high pressure systems close to Tasmania keeping rain-bearing systems away from the State. A series of cold fronts and westerly winds around the middle of the month brought rain, mostly to the western half, with some localised heavy falls. A cloud band and front on the 24th brought significant rain to most of the State, with falls over 45 mm on King Island. More fronts from the 24th on saw more rain into the western half. Overall, rain was near average in the west (and above average near King Island), but below average in the east (and especially on Flinders Island). The total rainfall for the State was about 14% below the February average.

Hobart's mean maximum temperature of 23.8 °C was 2.1 °C above the February average, the warmest since 2001, and 1.3 °C warmer than last February. The temperature peaked at 32.7 °C on the 23rd, but reached only 15.8 °C on the 16th. Overnight temperatures were also well above average in Hobart: the mean daily minimum of 14.4 °C was 2.3 °C above average and almost a degree warmer than February last year. The temperature only dropped below 10 °C on two mornings, compared to a February average of about five such cool mornings. The 21.8 mm of rain recorded in the city is down on the monthly average of about 40 mm.

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Extremes in February 2016
Hottest day 33.6 °C at Scotts Peak Dam on the 2nd
Warmest days on average 25.5 °C at Ouse Fire Station
Coolest days on average 13.8 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Coldest day 2.6 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on the 16th
Coldest night -1.4 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on the 16th
Coolest nights on average 5.8 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Warmest nights on average 16.6 °C at Swan Island
Warmest night 21.8 °C at Flinders Island Airport on the 24th
Warmest on average overall 19.7 °C at Larapuna (Eddystone Point),
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) and Swan Island
Coolest on average overall 9.8 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Wettest overall 233.8 mm at Mount Read
Wettest day 53.6 mm at Warra on the 16th
Strongest wind gust 150 km/h at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on the 26th

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 highest February daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
King Island Airport 45.4 on the 25th 44.4 on the 2nd in 1990 43



Highest February total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
February
Forthside Research Station 128.4 185.4 in 1969* 45.0
Lilydale Post Office 97.0 156.2 in 1969* 43.8

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




Lowest February total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Average for
February
Deal Island 7.5 5.2 in 1985* 38.1

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




Record lowest February daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Macquarie Island 3.9 on the 28th 4.9 on the 23rd in 1988 67 8.7
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 5.4 on the 16th 5.5 on the 28th in 2008 21 17.6



Record highest February mean daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Wynyard Airport 23.6 23.4 in 2010 29 21.7
Dover 22.8 22.6 in 2001 26 20.6



Lowest February mean daily maximum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
February
Macquarie Island 8.0 7.9 in 1991* 8.7

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




Record highest February daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Flinders Island Airport 21.8 on the 24th 21.6 on the 4th in 2010 54 13.7



Highest February mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
higher
Average for
February
Butlers Gorge 8.0 8.1 in 1971* 6.2

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




Lowest February mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
February
Macquarie Island 4.5 3.7 in 1991* 5.3

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




Record highest February mean temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
February
Dover 17.2 16.9 in 1999 26 15.4



Lowest February mean temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
lower
Average for
February
Macquarie Island 6.2 5.8 in 1991* 7.0

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




Summary statistics for February 2016
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
February
2016
Diff
from
average
Highest for
February
2016
Mean for
February
2016
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
February
2016
Total for
February
2016
Average
for
February
Rank of
February
2016
Fraction of
February
average
Northern (district 91)
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 23.4 +1.2 28.1 3rd 14.4 +1.3 6.9 16th 35.0 32.6 average 107%
Burnie (Round Hill) 23.0 +1.7 28.3 8th 13.1 -0.2 5.9 16th 43.8 43.4 average 101%
Cape Grim 19.9   23.6 7th 14.6   11.2 16th 69.2
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 20.4 +0.7 24.6 22nd 14.5 +0.7 10.5 16th 66.2 33.9 v high 195%
Cressy Research Station 24.6 -0.7 29.6 23rd 12.6 +2.1 3.6 20th
Devonport Airport 23.1 +1.4 30.5 8th 14.0 +1.3 7.8 16th 31.8 36.3 average 88%
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 25.3 +0.7 30.9 23rd 14.0 +1.7 6.0 20th 24.4 30.7 average 79%
Launceston Airport 24.9 +0.1 31.3 23rd 12.1 +0.9 5.0 20th 31.0 28.8 average 108%
Low Head 22.2 +1.0 27.3 3rd 15.9 +1.3 11.6 20th 41.2 25.7 high 160%
Luncheon Hill (Forestry) 21.3 0.0 28.9 7th 11.4 +0.6 6.7 16th 62.6 53.2 high 118%
Marrawah 21.7 +0.8 26.0 1st 13.5 +1.0 10.2 16th 57.8 43.7 high 132%
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 23.6 +0.5 29.8 23rd 13.0 +1.7 5.6 16th 27.8 39.3 average 71%
Sheffield School Farm 22.0 +0.2 27.6 1st 11.9 +1.1 6.0 15th 33.4 42.9 average 78%
Smithton Aerodrome 23.0 +1.0 27.0 1st 11.7 0.0 4.3 21st 54.6 32.9 high 166%
Wynyard Airport 23.6 +1.9 29.0 8th 12.4 +0.7 4.9 20th 52.0 47.2 average 110%
East Coast (district 92)
Bicheno (Council Depot) 23.0 +1.6 30.0 13th 14.8 +1.7 9.2 16th 31.8 57.3 average 55%
Fingal (Legge Street) 23.9 +1.0 29.7 23rd 11.6 +1.5 5.3 15th 17.2 40.6 average 42%
Friendly Beaches 24.3 +1.5 31.0 13th 14.3 +1.0 9.1 16th 32.6 58.1 low 56%
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 20.4 +1.4 26.6 23rd 9.7 +1.4 1.8 20th 35.8 45.7 average 78%
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 23.7 +2.4 26.5 8th 15.7 +1.4 8.5 16th 33.0 46.0 average 72%
Maria Island (Point Lesueur) 21.7 +0.7 26.6 2nd 15.1 +1.4 9.5 16th 28.4 35.8 average 79%
St Helens Aerodrome 23.4 +1.5 29.1 13th 14.4 +1.0 8.4 16th 16.4 57.5 low 29%
Swan Island 22.7 +1.5 25.1 23rd 16.6 +1.2 11.1 16th 18.4 38.6 low 48%
Swansea (Francis Street) 23.0   30.2 13th 13.7   9.0 17th 28.8
Midlands (district 93)
Ross (The Boulevards) 24.7 +0.5 29.7 23rd 12.7 +2.1 3.9 20th 22.4 38.4 average 58%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania (Kincora) 24.9 +0.9 32.4 23rd 13.5 +2.3 7.9 15th 20.6 31.5 low 65%
Cape Bruny (Cape Bruny) 21.2 +1.3 30.4 2nd 13.3 +0.9 8.1 17th 35.6 56.2 average 63%
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 20.6 +2.0 28.9 2nd 13.8 +2.0 7.5 16th 31.7 56.3 low 56%
Dennes Point 22.4   28.8 2nd 14.5   9.0 16th 15.6
Dover 22.8 +2.2 29.1 2nd 11.5 +1.3 6.1 16th 27.6 51.0 low 54%
Dunalley (Stroud Point) 22.6   28.6 23rd 14.8   10.3 16th 26.6
Grove (Research Station) 23.6 +0.9 32.5 2nd 11.4 +2.2 4.7 21st 30.8 51.0 low 60%
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 23.8 +2.1 32.7 23rd 14.4 +2.3 8.2 16th 21.8 39.7 average 55%
Hobart Airport 23.9 +1.6 33.3 23rd 14.2 +2.1 8.5 16th 19.2 35.7 average 54%
Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) 13.8 +0.1 22.2 23rd 5.8 +0.4 -1.4 16th 84.4 78.3 average 108%
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 17.4 +0.1 26.2 23rd 12.5 +1.4 7.4 15th 70.0 69.7 average 100%
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 24.1 +0.5 32.3 23rd 11.9 +1.7 6.0 16th 20.6 32.6 low 63%
Tasman Island 19.3 +1.6 26.3 23rd 13.1 +1.4 6.1 17th 19.0 46.7 v low 41%
Tunnack Fire Station 22.1 +0.8 28.2 23rd 10.3 +1.4 4.3 21st 37.4 44.9 average 83%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 25.4 +1.4 32.1 2nd 12.0 +2.0 5.3 21st 16.4 34.6 low 47%
Maydena Post Office 22.5 +0.1 31.0 23rd 10.3 +1.4 5.4 15th 43.2 60.8 average 71%
Ouse Fire Station 25.5 +0.2 31.8 23rd 12.0 +2.0 5.3 21st 17.2 30.4 average 57%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Butlers Gorge 19.1 +0.2 27.0 2nd 8.0 +1.8 2.7 9th 80.4 79.8 average 101%
Lake St Clair National Park 19.3 -0.2 26.2 6th 7.1 +1.0 2.3 9th 92.4 79.0 average 117%
Liawenee 18.4 -0.1 23.7 13th 6.1 +0.9 -0.4 21st 22.2 37.8 average 59%
West Coast (district 97)
Cape Sorell 20.5 +1.9 25.0 7th 13.9 +1.7 10.1 16th 55.4 65.5 average 85%
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 16.7 -0.9 26.0 23rd 7.5 +0.1 0.8 16th 53.4 60.2 average 89%
Low Rocky Point 19.8   27.5 23rd 13.1   8.9 16th 56.6 72.3 average 78%
Mount Read 13.9 -0.6 22.3 2nd 6.6 +0.2 0.2 16th 233.8 171.2 high 137%
Scotts Peak Dam 21.6 +0.3 33.6 2nd 10.3 +0.8 4.8 16th 102.2 74.7 high 137%
Strahan Aerodrome 21.5 +0.2 29.6 23rd 12.2 +1.4 7.3 21st 80.6 63.7 high 127%
Warra 19.2 0.0 27.4 23rd 9.1 +0.8 3.8 16th 113.8 74.8 high 152%
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 21.4 +0.1 31.5 23rd 13.5 +0.4 7.5 21st 64.8 30.9 v high 210%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 23.3 +0.6 32.1 23rd 15.2 +1.5 8.5 18th 16.0 38.4 low 42%
Hogan Island 22.2 +0.9 28.5 23rd 16.0 +0.6 12.7 16th 6.8 39.6 v low 17%
Antarctica and Macquarie Island (district 300)
Macquarie Island 8.0 -0.7 9.7 14th 4.5 -0.8 0.7 29th 115.0 85.4 high 135%

Notes

The Monthly climate summary lists the main features of the weather in Tasmania 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.

A climate summary is generally published on the first working day of each month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 10 am on Tuesday 1 March 2016. 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