Moree weekend rain set to exceed 25mm

PARTS of the region could see their best rain of the year this weekend, and Moree could have the biggest win.

Bureau of Meteorology NSW/ACT manager Ann Farrell said today it was one “peak rainfall area of interest”.

The bureau’s forecast said it was likely to receive more than 25mm over Saturday and Sunday, 

“The last time Moree saw 25mm of rain was in March this year, and certainly that sort of area could expect that sort of rain as a minimum,” Ms Farrell said.

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She said “quite a few areas will see some steady rain”.

“Places like Tamworth, for example, haven’t seen 25mm in a day since October last year; Tamworth can certainly expect that sort of rainfall with this event.”

AMPS Moree consulting agronomist Tony Lockrey said “an inch will be well-received” in his district, especially for winter croppers.

“It’s critical timing, because wheat and barley are coming into head a bit early because of the drought, and very soon their yield potential will be capped,” he said.

Sheep and cattle producers who’d planted oats might also benefit.

“There might be a few paddocks of very scrappy oats planted in March that have turned blue but will freshen up a bit.

“Those oats, if they’ve still got any life in them, will revive if we get a substantial fall.”

An inch or more would “start to contribute to the spring feed equation” for those with livestock; but the area would need 50-100mm “to be anywhere near summer cropping”.

“And if you go down south of Gurley, Bellata way, it’s more like 150mm,” he said.

This would need to be over two or three rainfall events, however.

Clearing it up

Meanwhile, the BOM today again moved to clear up any confusion about rain predictions.

While some services’ abbreviated forecasts might say “chance of rain: 70 per cent; amount: 4-15mm”, the BOM said “they don’t mean there is a 70 per cent chance of receiving between 4mm and 15mm of rain”.

The percentage was the likelihood of any rain over 0.2mm – the minimum measurable amount.

As for the listed amounts, there was actually a 50 per cent change of receiving the lower figure, sliding to a 25 per cent chance of reaching the higher figure.