Naming tropical cyclones

Learn why tropical cyclones are named and how names are chosen.

On this page

Why cyclones have names

How tropical cyclones are named

Coordinating cyclone names with neighbouring countries

List of tropical cyclone names – Australian region

Retiring tropical cyclone names

Why cyclones have names

Tropical cyclones are dangerous storms that threaten lives, property and infrastructure. Our cyclone warning services help keep communities safe.

Tropical cyclones are named to help with communication. Naming a cyclone helps to:

  • raise its profile, heightening public awareness
  • reduce confusion when there are several cyclones at the same time.

The Bureau officially adopted a policy of naming cyclones in 1963. The first cyclones to have official names were Audrey and Bessie in January 1964. Only female names were used until 1979.

How tropical cyclones are named

We keep a list of approved names, in alphabetical order by the first letter. It alternates male and female names. Each name is a single word, usually a given name.

The list is divided into 5 sections, each with names from A–Z.

When a cyclone needs a name, we take the next name in alphabetical order from section that is in use. For example, a cyclone named Imogen is followed by Joshua, then Kimi.

When we reach the end of the section, we move to the first name on the next section.

Video: How do tropical cyclones get their names?



View video transcript

Coordinating cyclone names with neighbouring countries

Neighbouring countries approve cyclone names through the World Meteorological Organization Regional Tropical Cyclone Committees.

This avoids duplication. It also means the cyclone doesn't need to be renamed when it moves across borders.

If a cyclone forms in a region next to Australia, such as Indonesia or Fiji, it will be named there. The cyclone keeps that name if it moves into the Australian region. For example, Fiji named Tropical Cyclone Yasi.

If a tropical cyclone named in our region moves into a neighbouring region, the cyclone keeps its Australian name.

List of tropical cyclone names – Australian region

Our list of approved cyclone names:

  • is alphabetical, using the first letter of the name
  • alternates between male and female names
  • indicates which names are to be retired.

First cyclone name for this season

The first cyclone for the Australian region for the 2023–24 season: Jasper, from Section 1.

Guide to pronouncing cyclone names
When sounding out pronunciation, use these vowel sounds:
  • ei – rain
  • ai – bite
  • ee – sheep
  • oh – flow
  • ah – bar
  • aw – more
  • oi – joy
  • a – bat
  • oo – zoo
  • uh – cup
  • e – net
  • o – hot
  • ie – ear
  • ahng – hung
  • ur – turn
Section 1
  • Anika (ah-ni-ka)
  • Billy (bil-ee)
  • Charlotte (shahr-luht)
  • Darian (dah-ree-uhn)
  • Ellie (el-ee)
  • tba
  • Gemm (jem)
  • Herman (hur-muhn)
  • Isabella (is-uh-be-luh)
  • Jasper (jas-per) – first name to be allocated in 2023–24
  • Kirrily (kier-uh-lee)
  • Lincoln (ling-kuhn)
  • Megan (mee-guhn)
  • Neville (nev-uhl)
  • Olga (ol-guh)
  • Paul (pawl)
  • Robyn (rob-in)
  • Sean (shawn)
  • Taliah (tah-lee-uh)
  • Vince (vins)
  • Zelia (ziel-ee-uh)
Section 2
  • Anthony (an-thuh-nee)
  • Bianca (bee-ahng-kuh)
  • Courtney (kawrt-nee)
  • Dianne (dai-an)
  • Errol (er-uhl)
  • Fina (fee-nuh)
  • Grant (grant)
  • Hayley (hei-lee)
  • Iggy (ig-ee)
  • Jenna (jen-uh)
  • Koji (koh-jee)
  • Luana (loo-ah-nuh)
  • Mitchell (mich-uhl)
  • Narelle (nuh-rel)
  • Oran (aw-ran)
  • Peta (pee-tuh)
  • Riordan (rier-duhn)
  • Sandra (san-druh)
  • Tim (tim)
  • Victoria (vik-tawr-ee-uh)
  • Zane (zein)
Section 3
  • Alessia (ah-les-ee-uh)
  • Bruce (broos)
  • Catherine (kath-rin)
  • Dylan (dil-uhn)
  • Edna (ed-nuh)
  • Fletcher (flech-er)
  • Gillian (jil-ee-uhn)
  • Hadi (hah-dee)
  • Ivana (ee-vah-nuh)
  • Jack (jak)
  • Kate (keit)
  • Laszlo (laz-loh)
  • Mingzhu (mingzoo)
  • Nathan (nei-thuhn)
  • Oriana (ohr-ee-ah-nuh)
  • Quincey (kwin-see)
  • Raquel (rah-kel)
  • Stan (stan)
  • Tatiana (ta-tee-ah-nuh)
  • Uriah (yoo-rai-uh)
  • Yvette (ee-vet)
Section 4
  • Alfred (al-fred)
  • Blanche (blanch)
  • Caleb (kei-luhb)
  • Dara (dar-uh)
  • Ernie (ur-nee)
  • Frances (fran-sis)
  • Greg (greg)
  • Hilda (hil-duh)
  • Irving (ur-ving)
  • Joyce (jois)
  • Kelvin (kel-vin)
  • Linda (lin-duh)
  • Marco (mahr-koh)
  • Nora (nawr-uh)
  • Owen (oh-uhn)
  • Penny (pen-ee)
  • Riley (rai-lee)
  • Savannah (suh-van-uh)
  • Trung (troong)
  • Verity (veh-ree-tee)
  • Wallace (wol-is)
Section 5
  • Amber (am-ber)
  • Blake (bleyk)
  • Claudia (klaw-dee-uh)
  • Declan (deh-klaen)
  • Esther (es-ter)
  • Ferdinand (fur-din-and)
  • Gretel (gre-tuhl)
  • Heath (heeth)
  • Imogen (im-uh-jen)
  • Joshua (josh-oo-uh)
  • Kimi (kim-ee)
  • Lucas (loo-kuhs)
  • Marian (mar-ee-uhn)
  • Niran (ni-ruh-n)
  • Odette (oh-det)
  • Paddy (pad-ee)
  • Ruby (roo-bee)
  • Stafford (staf-ud)
  • Tiffany (tif-uh-nee)
  • Vernon (vur-nuhn)

Retiring tropical cyclone names

If a cyclone severely affects the coast, resulting in significant damage and sometimes loss of life, its name is permanently retired from our list. For example, Tracy has been retired after the damage caused by Tropical Cyclone Tracy in 1974.

From our waiting list, a name of the same gender and first letter is submitted for approval. If approved, it replaces the retired name.

 

Current tropical cyclones

See our Tropical cyclone forecast page.