Tasmania in March 2016: another warm month

March was another warm month for Tasmania, with overnight temperatures especially mild in the first half of the month. There were a few days of localised heavy rain in the northeast, but the southwestern half of the State had less rain than usual for the time of year.

  • Warm nights, especially in the east
  • Warm days in the first half of the month
  • Cooler weather from 18th to 30th
  • Rain below average in the southwestern half
  • Heavy rain at some spots in the northeast

The first half of March 2016 brought a continuation of the above-average temperatures that have been common in Tasmania through spring and summer. Nights were especially mild, particularly in the first part of the month and especially in the northeast. Daytime temperatures were also above average most of the time, although there were some cool spells around the 18th and 27th. Overall, mean maximum temperatures were above average across the State, typically by around a degree, whilst mean minimum temperatures were above average by a bit over a degree at most sites. This March was about one to three degrees warmer than March last year, and for many coastal areas mean minimum temperatures this March were more typical of what might be expected in January.

A low which developed on a trough in moist northeasterly winds brought localised heavy rain to the northeast corner on the morning of the 11th, with Larapuna (Eddystone Point Lighthouse) recording 128 mm (a March record for the site), leading to its wettest March since 1931 and it being the wettest spot in the State this March. There were gusty winds and statewide rain as a cold front and associated low crossed on the 18th, with moderate falls in the west and localised heavy falls in the northeast: Bridport had its wettest March day on record with 76 mm to 9 am on the 19th. Another front on the 26th brought moderate falls to the west, but very little elsewhere. Totals for the month were well above average in a small patch of the northeast, but below average across the southwestern half of the State.

Hobart

Hobart's rain for the month was 17 mm, below the March average of 45 mm, and there was no measurable rain after the 20th. The mean daily maximum of 21.6 °C was 1.4 °C above average, whilst the mean daily minimum of 12.5 °C was 1.6 °C above average. These averages are more typical of January than March. The temperature in Hobart exceeded 28 °C four times during the month (on the 1st, 2nd, 9th and 17th) and even on the coldest day (the 20th) it reached 15.7 °C. There were several cool nights toward the end of the month, with the temperature dipping to 7.2 °C on the morning of the 29th. This was the only temperature below 8 °C, compared to a March average of about five such cool mornings.

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Extremes in March 2016
Hottest day 32.8 °C at Campania (Kincora) on the 2nd
Warmest days on average 23.5 °C at Ouse Fire Station
Coolest days on average 12.2 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Coldest day 4.3 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on the 15th
Coldest night -4.3 °C at Liawenee on the 29th
Coolest nights on average 4.3 °C at Liawenee
Warmest nights on average 15.6 °C at Hogan Island and Swan Island
Warmest night 20.6 °C at Flinders Island Airport on the 9th
Warmest on average overall 18.5 °C at Hogan Island
Coolest on average overall 8.5 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Wettest overall 196.2 mm at Larapuna (Eddystone Point)
Wettest day 127.6 mm at Larapuna (Eddystone Point) on the 11th
Strongest wind gust 137 km/h at Hogan Island on the 18th

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 March daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 127.6 on the 11th 117.3 on the 22nd in 1931 108
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 75.6 on the 19th 56.0 on the 24th in 2011 22
Low Rocky Point 52.6 on the 18th 49.0 on the 20th in 2003 22



Record highest March total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 121.0 117.1 in 2015 22 53.4

Highest March total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
March
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 196.2 230.9 in 1931 58.8



Record highest March mean daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Bicheno (Council Depot) 13.6 = 13.6 in 2010 41 12.1
Fingal (Legge Street) 9.9 9.8 in 2009 29 8.0

Highest March mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
higher
Average for
March
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 15.1 16.0 in 1974 13.0



Summary statistics for March 2016
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
March
2016
Diff
from
average
Highest for
March
2016
Mean for
March
2016
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
March
2016
Total for
March
2016
Average
for
March
Rank of
March
2016
Fraction of
March
average
Northern (district 91)
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 21.7 +0.8 26.7 2nd 13.0 +1.4 6.4 28th 121.0 53.4 highest 227%
Burnie (Round Hill) 21.4 +1.3 27.8 5th 11.5 -0.5 5.8 27th 23.4 51.6 low 45%
Cape Grim 18.8   22.3 17th 13.8   8.7 20th 52.6
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 19.4 +0.9 23.7 4th 13.9 +1.0 8.8 20th 54.4 48.0 average 113%
Cressy Research Station 22.3 -0.3 29.4 9th 9.6 +1.4 0.6 28th 16.8 44.8 low 38%
Devonport Airport 21.3 +0.9 26.6 9th 12.2 +1.4 4.8 28th 20.4 48.0 low 43%
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 23.2 +0.7 28.4 5th 11.7 +1.5 3.7 28th 52.8 39.5 high 134%
Launceston Airport 22.2 -0.4 28.8 5th 10.2 +0.9 2.1 28th 44.0 51.6 average 85%
Low Head 20.8 +0.8 23.7 11th 13.9 +0.7 8.1 28th 30.6 49.1 average 62%
Luncheon Hill (Forestry) 20.6 +1.9 26.7 3rd 11.0 +1.3 6.7 27th 58.0 88.1 low 66%
Marrawah 20.2 +0.8 24.0 17th 12.7 +1.0 7.5 20th 65.4 67.6 average 97%
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 21.7 +0.4 28.3 2nd 11.3 +1.4 4.9 28th 47.6 55.9 average 85%
Sheffield School Farm 20.3 +0.4 26.5 5th 10.5 +1.3 5.3 28th
Smithton Aerodrome 21.4 +1.1 26.4 2nd 10.5 +1.0 3.5 29th 52.0 52.0 average 100%
Wynyard Airport 21.7 +1.5 29.5 5th 11.1 +1.5 3.1 27th 46.8 48.5 average 96%
East Coast (district 92)
Bicheno (Council Depot) 21.3 +0.7 31.0 9th 13.6 +1.5 9.2 28th 71.3 57.4 high 124%
Fingal (Legge Street) 20.9 -0.7 29.2 2nd 9.9 +1.9 1.3 29th 37.0 44.9 average 82%
Friendly Beaches 22.1 +0.6 31.4 2nd 13.1 +1.1 8.1 28th 57.2 58.1 average 98%
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 17.9 +0.4 25.2 9th 7.4 +1.3 -0.6 28th 46.8 61.8 average 76%
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 21.7 +1.6 29.9 9th 15.1 +2.1 8.2 19th 196.2 58.8 v high 334%
Maria Island (Point Lesueur) 20.3 +0.1 27.3 2nd 13.9 +0.9 9.7 27th 17.2 34.0 low 51%
St Helens Aerodrome 21.3 +0.3 30.5 9th 12.9 +1.3 7.1 28th 109.2 65.6 high 166%
Swan Island 21.1 +0.7 25.0 6th 15.6 +1.2 9.6 28th 141.4 63.9 high 221%
Swansea (Francis Street) 20.9   31.5 9th 12.0   4.6 29th 50.2
Midlands (district 93)
Ross (The Boulevards) 22.3 +0.6 30.2 9th 9.7 +1.7 0.6 28th 34.8 34.9 average 100%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania (Kincora) 22.9 +0.7 32.8 2nd 10.9 +0.9 3.8 29th 19.0 33.8 low 56%
Cape Bruny (Cape Bruny) 20.0 +1.4 28.1 17th 12.8 +1.2 9.2 27th 42.2 54.3 average 78%
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 19.4 +1.8 26.8 17th 13.0 +1.9 9.7 27th 40.2 68.1 low 59%
Dennes Point 20.7   27.0 2nd 13.1   8.8 29th 19.2
Dover 21.1 +1.9 29.8 17th 10.0 +1.0 5.0 30th 33.2 63.3 low 52%
Dunalley (Stroud Point) 20.9   27.3 9th 13.4   9.2 27th 31.6
Grove (Research Station) 21.7 +0.6 28.5 17th 9.2 +1.3 0.8 29th 35.6 41.4 average 86%
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 21.6 +1.4 31.6 2nd 12.5 +1.6 7.2 29th 17.0 44.7 low 38%
Hobart Airport 22.2 +1.4 32.0 2nd 11.7 +0.9 5.1 29th 14.2 35.7 low 40%
Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) 12.2 +0.8 20.3 2nd 4.8 +0.8 -0.1 27th 60.2 76.1 average 79%
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 17.5 +1.2 26.3 18th 12.2 +1.6 9.3 28th 97.2 85.3 average 114%
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 22.2 +1.2 30.2 2nd 8.9 +0.7 2.0 29th 19.0 32.4 average 59%
Tasman Island 17.9 +0.9 24.7 2nd 12.5 +1.3 8.9 19th 39.6 68.8 low 58%
Tunnack Fire Station 20.0 +0.9 27.1 2nd 7.7 +0.3 0.1 29th 19.6 49.9 low 39%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 23.3 +1.5 31.3 2nd 9.5 +1.1 3.9 10th 8.2 39.0 v low 21%
Maydena Post Office 20.7 +1.2 27.8 17th 8.5 +1.4 3.6 10th 46.4 70.7 low 66%
Ouse Fire Station 23.5 +1.2 30.8 12th 9.2 +1.3 2.9 29th 16.0 30.2 low 53%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Butlers Gorge 18.1 +1.5 24.2 12th 5.8 +0.7 -1.5 20th 49.4 100.6 low 49%
Lake St Clair National Park 18.6 +2.0 23.9 3rd 5.2 +0.8 -1.4 20th 52.0 109.7 low 47%
Liawenee 16.8 +0.9 24.3 5th 4.3 +0.6 -4.3 29th 41.4 65.1 average 64%
West Coast (district 97)
Cape Sorell 19.9 +2.3 25.4 1st 13.0 +1.5 8.1 20th 71.6 83.6 average 86%
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 15.4 +0.9 22.9 12th 6.9 +0.7 2.9 27th 46.2 70.7 low 65%
Low Rocky Point 19.0   27.6 17th 12.2   7.6 20th 92.2 97.8 average 94%
Mount Read 12.9 +1.2 17.7 13th 5.9 +1.0 1.5 19th 149.6 272.3 v low 55%
Scotts Peak Dam 20.1 +1.8 30.6 17th 9.4 +1.0 5.5 15th 81.2 121.2 low 67%
Strahan Aerodrome 20.5 +1.1 27.8 17th 10.7 +0.9 3.1 20th 101.8 105.0 average 97%
Warra 17.6 +0.7 26.5 17th 8.0 +0.6 2.5 29th 55.0 99.5 low 55%
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 20.4 +0.3 32.0 17th 12.8 +0.7 7.3 22nd 30.4 51.3 low 59%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 22.4 +1.1 30.4 8th 14.0 +1.4 5.8 29th 50.6 50.4 average 100%
Hogan Island 21.3   29.3 2nd 15.6   12.0 19th 49.6 48.2 average 103%
Antarctica and Macquarie Island (district 300)
Macquarie Island 7.7 -0.3 9.2 21st 4.2 -0.5 0.7 28th 111.6 99.9 high 112%

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 Friday 1 April 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