Issued 4 April 2006

Rainfall deficiencies develop in eastern Australia

A dry start to the year has seen short-term rainfall deficiencies emerge across parts of eastern Australia, especially over inland eastern Queensland, the Bureau of Meteorology announced today. Furthermore, the first six months of the northern wet season were very dry and hot in southwest Queensland and northwest NSW, while at the 12-month timescale, rainfall deficiencies are largely confined to southern Victoria.

3-month rainfall deficiencies

For the 3-month period from January to March, serious to severe rainfall deficiencies have developed over an area of eastern Queensland near and to the west of the Great Dividing Range, stretching from near Moranbah to around Gympie. There are numerous other patches in Queensland, NSW and Victoria that are also affected for this period, the most significant of which straddles the far eastern Victorian - southeast NSW border region. In addition, a band of three-month deficiencies stretches from northern to southern Tasmania.

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6-month rainfall deficiencies

For the 6-month period from October to March, serious rainfall deficiencies, with patches of severe deficiencies, affect some small areas near Mackay and other more substantial districts in far southwest Queensland and adjacent far northwest NSW. The dry conditions have been exacerbated by very much above average to record high temperatures.

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3-month rainfall deficiencies

For the 12-month period from April to March, rainfall deficiencies are mainly confined to several patches in southwest and south-central Victoria.

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Climate

Service notice

Network problems on 8 January disrupted processing of observations, affecting some climate information. Missing data are being retrieved and will be processed into our systems over coming weeks.