The latest monthly rainfall and climate data has been released by the government this week, painting an interesting picture depending on where in the country you’ve been.
July was a dry month for most parts of the country with the central North Island, Bay of Plenty, eastern Nelson-Marlborough and Canterbury regions experiencing well below normal rainfall (<50%).
Below normal rainfall (50-79%) characterised much ofAuckland, the south-eastern coast of the North Island and the western coast of theSouth Island.
In contrast to this general dryness, significant rainfall events occurred in Northland and south-west Southland. These events contributed to the well above normal (> 149%) rainfall anomalies recorded in the regions during July.
After a record-warm June, temperatures were back to normal for most of the countryduring July.
A pocket of below average (-1.20 to -0.51Â°C) mean temperature wasrecorded in the districts of Waitomo and Ruapehu, while above average temperatures(0.51 to 1.20Â°C) were observed in southern Canterbury and Otago.
A mid-winter warm spell hit the eastern South Island and some areas of the North Island on the last day of July setting new maximum daily temperature records at several locations.
As of 1 August, 2014 soil moistures were typical for the time of year for the entire country with the exception of Timaru, where slightly below normal soil moistures were present.
It was an unusually sunny mid-winter with the Waikato and Bay of Plenty experiencing well above normal (>125%) sunshine hours.
The high levels of sunshine extended to the rest of the North Island, despite the high rainfall in Northland, as well as to the north-west of the South Island where above average sunshine was recorded (100-125%).
Banks Peninsula, Buller, coastal Otago and the south coast of Southland were not as bright, receiving below normal sunshine (75-89%).
July climate in the six main centres
Temperatures were near average for all of the six main centres with the exception of Dunedin which experienced above average mean July temperatures.
Monthly rainfall totals ranged from near normal in Wellington to 56% of normal in Christchurch.
Well above normal sunshine was observed in Hamilton, above normal sunshine occurred in Auckland and Tauranga and near normal sunshine was present in Christchurch and Dunedin.
Of the six main centres in July 2014, Christchurch was the coolest and driest, Auckland was the warmest, Wellington was the wettest, Tauranga was the sunniest and Dunedin was the cloudiest.
– National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research