Colac’s dry start to the year

Judy Billing, who records rainfall at her family’s dairy farm west of Colac, is pictured with grandchildren Henry  and Biddy, Bella and Tom.

Judy Billing, who records rainfall at her family’s dairy farm west of Colac, is pictured with grandchildren Henry and Biddy, Bella and Tom.

COLAC has had a dry start to 2014, with below average falls for January.

Mount Gellibrand’s weather station, north-east of Colac, recorded 27.2 millimetres for January, below the long-term average of 35 millimetres.

Colac’s rain gauge at the Colac Otway Shire Council offices recorded 20.8 millimetres and the average is 36.6 millimetres.

Cape Otway also received below-average rainfall; the weather station there picked up 13.6 millimetres for the month, while the average is 44 millimetres.

Larpent’s Judy Billing recorded 19 millimetres at her family’s dairy farm, west of Colac.

Mrs Billing said recording rainfall was an interest of hers.

“I’ve been doing it for about 10 years I suppose,” she said.

Daughter-in-law Sam Simpson said the dairy also had an automatic weather station on its roof which recorded wind speed and temperatures.

“Mark uses it all the time,” Ms Simpson said of her husband.

Wyelangta’s Helen Flower recorded rain on 15 days in January at her Otways property, and her January total was 56.6 millimetres.

Mrs Flower had 40.4 millimetres in January 2013, 131 in 2012 and 164 millimetres in 2011.

Weeaproinah’s Colin and Margaret McKenzie recorded 60 millimetres at their property, above last year’s 28 millimetres.

“No rain fell on 23 days,” Mr McKenzie said.

Colac and district’s weather followed a “hot and dry” pattern across the state for the month.

Bureau of Meteorology’s climate statement for January shows Colac’s average maximum temperature was 27.4 degrees, 1.8 degrees above average.

 

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