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Droughts over when they’ve only just begun?

Droughts have this month been declared in Northland, Waikato and Ruapehu but with heavy rain for some in these regions this past week – and more on the way today and the coming week – it’s possible the droughts may be over before they even set in.

However farmers are still being advised to plan for drier than average conditions, and local authorities are warning locals to be aware of fire and water restrictions.

Rain, heavy at times, has fallen off and on across many parts of the North Island in recent days, with particularly heavy rain crossing Northland, Auckland and Waikato on Saturday. 

However not all farms received the deluge.

The rain came less than two weeks after predicted rains would soon arrive with La Nina conditions despite the prolonged dry spell.

Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says the rain this week was “100% La Nina”. 

“These conditions are absolutely text book La Nina for the North Island.  We had a sub-tropical low, extremely high humidity and winds from the north east bringing rain.  This is the type of weather we really should have been seeing last month but never did”.

Mr Duncan says long range forecasts, that go beyond Boxing Day, indicate more sub-tropical development north west of New Zealand, which has the potential to again affect northern regions the week after.

Meanwhile a nasty looking low pressure system will, in the coming days, push on to the South Island bringing more heavy rain.

And is now also predicting an “increased possibility” of another rain bearing front from the south west after Boxing Day.

Mr Duncan says while the rain has arrived to many dry and drought affected areas locals should still continue to observe water and fire restrictions until authorities declare otherwise, especially considering not all have received heavy rain.

What are your rainfall totals for December so far?  Post your readings below!


Graeme on 19/12/2010 3:48am

Henderson, Waitakere

103mm to date this month

At the in laws place in Henensville they have had 67mm this weekend so far

Tricia on 19/12/2010 1:26am

Rain from late Sept to 15 Dec = 13mm. Dec 16 = 10mm. Dec 17 = 152mm. Dec 18 = 10mm. Dec 19 =16mm so far. Such a wonderful Christmas gift !

Robert on 18/12/2010 11:59pm

35mm in eastern lee of the ranges, very poor so far

Rob on 18/12/2010 11:21pm

About 65mm so far for December up in Kaitaia, rain on and off during the night and this morning nothing heavy but still good.

shawn on 18/12/2010 10:35pm

have had 130mm in last three days just north of Dargaville

WW Forecast Team on 18/12/2010 10:37pm

Wow, that’s fantastic!

– WeatherWatch Weekends

Dane@nsgc on 18/12/2010 9:38pm

The rain we havehad the past week has been great. Although it hasnt been heavy it has been perfect for soaking into the ground. Rain radar looks like we are in for another amount today maybe even 20mm plus. Month to date at 7am sunday is 75mm. Im predicting the month will finish around 100-120mm

Surfy on 18/12/2010 9:32pm

Hamilton city has only received 24.4mm as to date comparing to 18mm last month and 70mm in october. At least the grass is looking greener.

Tania Wilkinson on 18/12/2010 9:14pm

19.6 mm is our total so far for December. We’ve been missing all this heavy rain.

Guest on 18/12/2010 9:11pm

The drought definatly is not over in the waikato, I farm near Matamata and have recieved 12mm since Monday. Hoping to see some from the rain band passing through today but I havent got high hopes.

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