It’s shaping up to be a mild winter with both June and July giving us above average temperatures. Nights in June were particularly warm, whereas July delivered balmy daytime temperatures that were more than 1°C above average. July’s rainfall nestled very close to the month’s long-term average… thankfully so after a soggy June. The Heretaunga Plains sat at 96% of July’s average rainfall and the Ruataniwha Plains at 104%. Most areas had similar figures except the Ruahine Range, which was the bullseye for wet weather and got an extra 50% of its average July rainfall. The region’s river flows and soil moisture levels remain higher than usual and groundwater levels do too after being bolstered by June’s rain.
As an El Niño continues to develop and the Indian Ocean Dipole looks to tip into a positive mode, the forecasted spring pressure patterns around New Zealand favour a prevailing southwest wind flow. Higher than usual sea-level pressure is expected to extend across Australia and north of the country and lower pressure to the south and east. The region’s sea temperatures are still warmer than usual, which should mean temperatures don’t suffer badly, while rainfall is expected to be near or below normal for the spring season. That would be quite the novelty after having fairly wet spring weather over the past few years.
Percentage of Normal Rainfall
Dr Kathleen Kozyniak
Principal Scientist Air
Hawke’s Bay Regional Council