South Australia in autumn 2013: Near record autumn heat for South Australia

  • Several warm spells result in temperatures 1 to 3 °C warmer than average.
  • Warmest autumn for the State in 8 years, and third warmest autumn on record.
  • Above average rainfall in the north and west, but drier than average in eastern agricultural areas.
  • Record hottest autumn day and night time temperatures for several locations including Adelaide.

Rainfall

Rainfall throughout autumn 2013 tended to be above average across the north and west of the state, and below average in the eastern agricultural areas.

Moderate, though patchy, rain events occurred in late April and mid May, but the most significant rainfall event for autumn occurred right at the end of the season as a cut-off low pressure system was able to produce widespread rainfall.

Much of April and May saw little in the way tropical activity to produce widespread rain events for the start of the growing season, which followed a drier than average summer and generally low soil moisture. Western parts of the agricultural areas received some useful rainfall in late April, but many locations in the eastern districts waited until mid to late May for any significant rainfall.

Pastoral Districts

Rainfall totals were variable, generally ranging between 30 mm to 60 mm, with some locations in the northwest receiving in excess of 100 mm. Ernabella had the highest rainfall total in the Pastoral districts recording 113.0 mm, most of that total falling in two rain events on March 28th and May 21st.

Agricultural Districts

Rainfall totals across agricultural areas ranged between 40 to 80 mm, with totals in excess of 100 mm across the Mount Lofty Ranges. The Mallee and the Riverland had lower totals around 20 mm. The wettest location in the agricultural districts was at Crafers in the Mount Lofty Ranges, observing 206.0 mm.

Some sites had their highest total autumn rainfall for at least 20 years.

The wettest single day was at Murrays Lagoon (Bayside) with 97.0 mm on 21 Apr.

See a map of rainfall deciles.

Temperature

South Australia was very much hotter than average during autumn 2013. The season began with several weeks of well above average temperatures, particularly across the north of the state. Temperatures were closer to average in April, though another burst of unusually warm conditions in the first 10 days of May saw temperatures 8 to 10 C above average across the state.

Averaged across the State as whole, the autumn mean temperature for South Australia (combining daily maximum and minimum temperatures) was 1.7 C hotter than average, the third warmest autumn on record for the state, after 2005 which was 1.9 C above the long term average, and 1921. By comparison, autumn 2012 was 0.3 C cooler than average.

Maximum

Maximum temperatures were 1 to 2 C above average across much of the the state throughout the season. Several locations including Robe, Mount Gambier, Streaky bay and Adelaide observed hottest autumn days on record.

Autumn maximum temperatures ranged from 18.5C at Mount Lofty to 30.4 C at Marree Comparison in the Far North. The hottest autumn day in was on 27th March when temperatures reached 42.8C at Moomba Airport. The coldest day was 9.4 C at Mount Lofty on the 22nd of May.

Some sites had their highest autumn mean daily maximum temperature on record.
See a map of maximum temperature anomalies.

Minimum

Over night minimum temperatures through autumn 2013 across South Australia have been the warmest since 2007. Across the State as a whole, minimum temperatures were 1.5 C warmer than average. In comparison, autumn 2012 was 0.7 C cooler than normal. The hottest autumn nights for the state occurred in 1923.

Minimum temperatures averaged for the season ranged from 9.2 C at Coonawarra in the south-east to 16.6 C at Neptune Island. The lowest recorded minimum temperature was -3.0C at Naracoorte on the 20th of April, and the warmest night was 28.5 C at Oodnadatta Airport on the March 27th.

Some sites had their warmest autumn night (highest daily minimum temperature) on record.Some sites had their highest autumn mean daily minimum temperature on record.
Some sites had their highest autumn mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years.
See a map of minimum temperature anomalies.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
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Extremes in autumn 2013
Hottest day 42.8 °C at Moomba Airport on 27 Mar
Warmest days on average 30.4 °C at Marree Comparison
Coolest days on average 18.5 °C at Mount Lofty
Coldest day 9.4 °C at Mount Lofty on 22 May
Coldest night -3.0 °C at Naracoorte Aerodrome on 20 Apr
Coolest nights on average 9.2 °C at Coonawarra
Warmest nights on average 16.6 °C at Neptune Island
Warmest night 28.5 °C at Oodnadatta Airport on 27 Mar
Warmest on average overall 23.0 °C at Oodnadatta Airport
Coolest on average overall 14.7 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 206.0 mm at Crafers
Driest overall 12.0 mm at Mount Dare
Wettest day 97.0 mm at Murrays Lagoon (Bayside) on 21 Apr
Highest wind gust 102 km/h at Coober Pedy Airport on 8 Mar

Highest total autumn rainfall for at least 20 years
Total rainfall
for autumn 2013 (mm)
Most recent autumn
at least this wet
Years since
wetter
Average for
autumn
Marla Police Station 93.6 359.3 in 1989* 23 47.7
Mount Barry Station 56.7 326.0 in 1989* 23 31.7

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




Record highest autumn mean daily maximum temperature
Mean daily maximum
temperature
for autumn 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for autumn
Years of
record
Average for
autumn
Robe Comparison 20.5 = 20.5 in 2007 128 18.8
Mount Gambier Aero 21.6 = 21.6 in 2007 71 19.6
Warooka 23.5 = 23.5 in 1980 53 21.9
Neptune Island 21.1 20.7 in 2007 51 19.4
Meningie 23.3 23.1 in 2008 46 21.4
Cape Willoughby 20.5 20.4 in 2007 45 18.9
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 21.6 21.4 in 1993 21 19.8
Coulta (Coles Point) 23.6 = 23.6 in 2008 21 22.0
Edithburgh 22.6 22.3 in 2008 20 20.9
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 24.1 24.0 in 1994 20 21.8



Record highest autumn daily minimum temperature
Highest daily minimum
temperature
in autumn 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for autumn
Years of
record
Average for
autumn
Neptune Island 22.2 on 7 Mar 21.7 on 9 Mar 2008 52 14.9
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 22.8 on 8 Mar 22.7 on 4 Mar 2004 22 12.4



Record highest autumn mean daily minimum temperature
Mean daily minimum
temperature
for autumn 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for autumn
Years of
record
Average for
autumn
Mount Barker 10.9 10.6 in 2007 112 8.5
Yongala 9.7 9.6 in 1968 87 7.5
Streaky Bay 14.9 14.4 in 2007 85 12.8
Cleve 14.3 13.9 in 2007 72 12.3
Ceduna AMO 13.6 13.0 in 1968 71 10.8
Woomera Aerodrome 15.0 14.4 in 2007 63 13.1
Adelaide Airport 14.0 13.9 in 2007 58 11.9
Parafield Airport 13.8 13.7 in 1942 55 11.9
Warooka 14.2 13.8 in 2007 53 12.5
Elliston 14.2 = 14.2 in 1971 51 12.3
Neptune Island 16.6 16.0 in 2007 51 14.9
Eudunda 11.5 11.3 in 1971 48 9.9
Cape Willoughby 15.4 15.1 in 2007 45 14.1
Kimba 12.7 12.5 in 2007 44 11.2
Andamooka 15.8 15.6 in 1988 41 14.0
Edinburgh RAAF 13.8 13.4 in 1989 40 11.7
Hawker 12.7 = 12.7 in 1968 38 11.0
Adelaide (Kent Town) 14.6 14.2 in 2007 36 12.6
Maitland 14.1 13.8 in 2007 31 12.3
Nullarbor 13.4 13.0 in 2005 25 11.5
Whyalla Aero 13.5 13.1 in 1990 24 12.0
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 12.2 12.0 in 2007 21 10.7
Coulta (Coles Point) 13.6 13.0 in 2007 21 11.8
Edithburgh 14.6 14.4 in 2007 20 13.1

Highest autumn mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Mean daily minimum
temperature
for autumn 2013 (°C)
Most recent autumn
at least this warm
Years since
warmer
Average for
autumn
Kyancutta 12.0 12.2 in 1971* 41 9.7
Murray Bridge Comparison 11.7 11.9 in 1989 24 10.4
Robe Comparison 12.9 13.2 in 1989 24 11.5
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 12.5 12.8 in 1989 24 10.7

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




Summary statistics for autumn 2013
Maximum temperatures
for autumn
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for autumn
(°C)
Rainfall
for autumn
(millimetres)
Mean for
autumn
2013
Diff
from
average
Highest for
autumn
2013
Mean for
autumn
2013
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
autumn
2013
Total for
autumn
2013
Average
for
autumn
Rank of
autumn
2013
Fraction of
autumn
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 28.2 +0.9 38.8 12 Mar 15.8 +1.8 7.2 26 May 27.4 44.3 average 62%
Coober Pedy Airport 28.1   40.0 12 Mar 15.8   7.3 25 May 71.4
Ernabella (Pukatja) 27.7   39.3 12 Mar 14.0   2.1 17 May 113.0
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 28.3   39.1 12 Mar 14.2   4.5 18 May 32.2
Tarcoola Aero 28.3   41.2 12 Mar 14.4   5.6 17 May 47.0
Woomera Aerodrome 27.0 +1.5 38.6 12 Mar 15.0 +1.9 6.6 14 May 41.0 43.4 average 94%
Far North (district 17)
Arkaroola 26.2 +1.2 38.2 27 Mar 11.5 +0.2 1.5 14 May 75.8 62.7 high 121%
Leigh Creek Airport 27.3 +1.2 37.4 10 Mar 14.1 +1.1 4.0 14 May 42.4 48.2 average 88%
Marree Aero 29.2   39.5 27 Mar 14.7   5.3 25 May 36.4
Marree Comparison 30.4 +1.9 40.2 12 Mar     5.9 25 May 33.8 38.5 average 88%
Moomba Airport 30.2   42.8 27 Mar 15.6   6.2 14 May 49.8
Oodnadatta Airport 30.1 +1.7 40.6 12 Mar 16.0 +1.6 5.0 25 May 32.2 38.1 average 85%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 25.8 +1.9 40.6 26 Mar 13.6 +2.8 5.4 26 May 101.3 68.1 high 149%
Cleve 24.0 +1.5 38.0 11 Mar 14.3 +2.0 7.1 13 May 117.6 91.1 high 129%
Cleve Aerodrome 24.0   38.5 11 Mar 14.0   7.3 26 May 110.4 85.5 high 129%
Coulta (Coles Point) 23.6 +1.6 35.5 12 Mar 13.6 +1.8 6.7 28 May 124.4
Cummins Aero 24.7   39.8 12 Mar 12.4   4.5 18 May 100.0
Elliston 24.3 +2.3 37.7 12 Mar 14.2 +1.9 6.8 28 May 90.5 94.7 average 96%
Kimba 24.6 +0.9 38.5 11 Mar 12.7 +1.5 4.8 28 May 92.8 75.0 high 124%
Kyancutta 26.6 +1.2 40.3 12 Mar 12.0 +2.3 2.2 26 May 66.4 66.2 average 100%
Minnipa Pirsa 25.4   39.4 12 Mar 13.5   7.1 28 May 84.8
Neptune Island 21.1 +1.7 31.8 12 Mar 16.6 +1.7 10.4 13 May 96.2 105.6 average 91%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 24.1 +2.3 41.1 12 Mar 13.6 +1.2 6.4 17 May 76.6
Nullarbor 25.8 +1.6 40.4 26 Mar 13.4 +1.9 5.1 25 May 104.0 73.9 high 141%
Port Augusta Aero 27.3   39.9 12 Mar 13.9   4.5 18 May 46.0
Streaky Bay 25.6 +1.9 39.5 11 Mar 14.9 +2.1 8.0 18 May 103.6 83.8 high 124%
Whyalla Aero 25.3 +1.4 39.4 12 Mar 13.5 +1.5 3.8 28 May 42.4 65.7 low 65%
Wudinna Aero 26.5   40.4 12 Mar 12.3   2.9 26 May 61.6
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker 25.9 +0.7 37.7 10 Mar 12.7 +1.7 2.4 18 May 47.6 66.7 average 71%
Yongala 23.0 +0.9 35.9 11 Mar 9.7 +2.2 1.4 19 May 76.8 76.2 average 101%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 25.5   39.5 11 Mar 10.0   -1.0 20 Apr 52.7
Yunta Airstrip 25.0   36.7 10 Mar 10.6   0.3 18 May 39.0
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 22.7   36.5 12 Mar 10.9   1.7 18 May 123.8
Port Pirie Aerodrome 26.0   39.2 11 Mar 13.8   5.2 18 May 90.1
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 25.1   38.1 11 Mar 11.7   3.6 28 May 82.6
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 22.6 +1.7 39.5 12 Mar 14.6 +1.5 6.7 19 May 97.2 88.1 average 110%
Kadina AWS 25.1   38.5 12 Mar 11.8   3.6 18 May 106.6
Maitland 23.7 +1.6 37.5 11 Mar 14.1 +1.8 7.5 18 May 123.4 126.6 average 97%
Minlaton Aero 24.5   38.4 12 Mar 13.3   6.7 17 May 87.4
Stenhouse Bay 22.6   38.4 12 Mar 15.3   8.7 28 May 95.0
Warooka 23.5 +1.6 36.4 11 Mar 14.2 +1.7 6.8 13 May 58.8 103.3 low 57%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 21.1   32.9 7 Mar 13.7   8.3 2 May 137.3
Cape Willoughby 20.5 +1.6 33.3 12 Mar 15.4 +1.3 8.5 13 May 109.8 122.6 average 90%
Kingscote Aero 23.2   37.5 12 Mar 10.5   2.2 2 May 119.0 101.2 high 118%
Parndana Cfs AWS 22.2   37.0 12 Mar 11.6   5.4 13 May 136.8
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (Kent Town) 24.3 +1.7 38.4 11 Mar 14.6 +2.0 6.7 24 May 107.6 126.7 low 85%
Adelaide Airport 23.7 +1.7 36.9 12 Mar 14.0 +2.1 5.7 24 May 96.4 111.1 average 87%
Edinburgh RAAF 24.4 +1.4 39.5 12 Mar 13.8 +2.1 5.0 24 May 95.6 101.2 average 94%
Parafield Airport 24.7 +1.9 38.4 12 Mar 13.8 +1.9 4.3 24 May 116.6 110.2 average 106%
Roseworthy AWS 24.8   39.7 12 Mar 12.3   3.8 16 Apr 90.0
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa Viticultural 22.8   37.4 11 Mar 11.3   2.6 24 May 99.9
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 24.3 +1.3 38.9 12 Mar 12.5 +1.8 3.0 24 May 110.4 110.2 average 100%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 22.9   39.0 12 Mar 13.4   6.8 29 May 63.0
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 21.0   35.4 11 Mar 12.4   5.8 13 May 134.0
Mount Barker 21.7 +1.2 37.6 11 Mar 10.9 +2.4 3.8 18 May 92.2 177.2 low 52%
Mount Crawford (Mt Crawford AWS) 20.6   35.6 12 Mar 11.7   5.2 13 May 143.4
Mount Lofty 18.5   32.7 11 Mar 10.8   4.2 13 May 186.8
Noarlunga 23.3   36.2 12 Mar 15.1   8.6 18 May 93.2
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 19.9   34.6 12 Mar 12.7   6.4 13 May 157.2
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 22.6   37.9 12 Mar 11.3   3.4 28 May 109.2
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 24.8 +1.0 38.3 11 Mar 10.1 +1.2 -0.5 20 Apr 53.9 52.1 average 103%
Renmark Aero 25.4   39.6 12 Mar 10.3   -1.2 20 Apr 59.6
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 22.6 +1.3 37.0 11 Mar 11.5 +1.6 4.2 28 May 86.6 98.8 average 88%
Meningie 23.3 +1.9 38.4 12 Mar 12.3 +1.6 4.4 2 May 129.1 114.5 high 113%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 24.7   40.4 12 Mar 10.6   1.6 20 Apr 43.0
Murray Bridge Comparison 25.2 +2.0 40.6 11 Mar 11.7 +1.3 5.0 18 May 57.6 84.5 low 68%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 23.5   38.1 12 Mar 12.2   4.4 5 May 54.8
Murray Mallee (district 25A)
Karoonda 24.4   39.5 11 Mar 10.9   2.0 20 Apr 53.5 77.2 average 69%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 23.9 +1.4 40.5 11 Mar 10.8 +1.3 1.5 20 Apr 73.0 106.4 low 69%
Keith (Munkora) 24.3   40.2 11 Mar 9.6   -1.8 19 Apr 68.4
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 23.9   39.0 11 Mar 10.4   2.3 2 May 46.2
Lameroo Comparison 24.1 +1.1 38.9 11 Mar 11.4 +2.2 3.5 20 Apr 59.2 85.2 low 69%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 21.6 +1.8 36.6 12 Mar 12.2 +1.5 3.5 20 Apr 121.2
Coonawarra 22.5 +1.5 39.1 11 Mar 9.2 +1.0 -1.3 2 May 84.0 115.9 low 72%
Mount Gambier Aero 21.6 +2.0 39.7 12 Mar 10.0 +1.2 0.7 21 May 132.8 160.0 average 83%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 23.0   39.2 11 Mar 9.5   -3.0 20 Apr 70.0
Padthaway South 23.0   39.0 11 Mar 9.7   -1.6 20 Apr 87.2
Robe Airfield 22.0   36.6 12 Mar 10.8   -1.1 5 May 137.8
Robe Comparison 20.5 +1.7 32.5 12 Mar 12.9 +1.4 4.8 5 May 129.7 145.9 average 89%

Notes

A Seasonal 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 12 pm on Monday 3 June 2013. 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.

The ACORN-SAT dataset is being used for temperature area averages from December 2012 onwards. The major change from earlier datasets is that the ACORN-SAT dataset commences in 1910, rather than 1950, and hence rankings are calculated using a larger set of years.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries