It’s amazing how quickly the season can turn. The beginning of 2023 seems to have marked the end of a prolonged wet period that smashed rainfall records across the country, with February in particular recording very much below average rainfall across the east coast. A combination of warmer and drier conditions saw paddocks brimming with mature green feed quickly dry out and turn brown, reducing their digestibility and nutritional value.
However, the continuation of high temperatures combined with a wetter than usual March generated new green growth in pastures, adding much needed value to grazing paddocks in good time to support joining and lambing activities.
As they say, “the next drought begins the day after the last rain falls”. According to the Bureau of Meteorology’s most recent 3-month outlook (issued: 4 May, 2023), the rainfall that we are receiving may be short lived, as a return to drier conditions is likely from June onwards. From June to August the majority of Australia is tipped to have less than a 30% chance of exceeding median rainfall, with the Riverina in particular predicted to be extremely dry. This is also likely to bring variation in winter temperatures with large areas of the east coast tipped to experience warmer than usual conditions throughout the same period.
With widespread summer and autumn rainfall keeping soil moisture levels high, warmer winter conditions may prove to be ideal for growing livestock during the cooler months.