Areas of north-western Queensland, the channel country and inland Southern Queensland and northern NSW remain in the grip of serious long term rainfall deficiencies, according to the Bureau of Meteorology’s latest monthly drought statement.
March brought mixed news for Australian cattle production areas, with
generally below average rain falling over Western Australia, South Australia, the Top End and inland northern Queensland east of Mount Isa, and above average rain recorded over much of NSW, adjacent parts of neighbouring states, and extending north into southeast Queensland up to the Capricornia District.
As a result of the rain, longer-term (18 month) rainfall deficiencies have eased in the southeastern quarter of Queensland and eastern New South Wales, with slight easing also seen in Queensland's Channel Country, western New South Wales and northwestern Victoria.
Conversely, deficiencies have increased in northeastern South Australia, inland northern Queensland and a small area of the southeast Northern Territory, as well as on the coast of Western Australia near Shark Bay.
Serious to severe deficiencies (lowest 10pc to 5pc of records) remain in central Queensland and in an area inland of the Great Dividing Range extending from southern Queensland into northern New South Wales as well as in areas around the Queensland–South Australian border (affecting the Northern Territory, South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland), in eastern New South Wales, western Victoria and on the coast of Western Australia near Shark Bay.
The vast majority of eastern Australia has received below- to very-much-below-average rainfall for the 18-month period ending March; rainfall has been well below average for a significant period over this area.
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