Rain locations selective as Anzac Day looms

Rain locations selective as Anzac Day looms


The start of a break has been experienced in parts of the country, but much more is needed.


A month out from the autumn break's traditional Anzac Day kick off and some Victorian regions have had a small confidence boost for the season ahead.

Despite the Bureau of Meteorology April to June forecast failing to fill producers with hope, parts of the east coast have enjoyed falls in the past week.

Those that did receive the rain are cautious however to point out it was just a "start" to the autumn rainfall season, with much more needed before they can bank on it.

As the northern states receive cyclone spin-off falls, and central west and parts of the eastern Riverina in NSW recording upwards of 40 millimetres in places, most of Victoria is used to waiting a bit longer for the weather to turn.

Producers sowing hay, pasture and grazing crops have got stuck into any paddocks that have got some of the moisture, and now wait for a decent follow up to rebuild fodder stocks that have been significantly diminished in the past few years.

In the North-East, Barnawartha has recorded 31.4mm for March so far, according to the Bureau of Meteorology, with Corryong recording 70mm, while Wangaratta has had 21mm, Benalla 14.2mm and Mansfield 15.4mm.

Daniel Fischer, Landmark Wangaratta, said rainfall had been hit and miss, with the hills region getting anywhere from 30-60mm last week, but the river flats and to the north of Wangaratta only received 2-10mm.

"The places that got heavy December rain are worse of all, as it washed everything off the top and left them with no feed, but for the northern parts of Wangaratta it did provide water security - we would have been in dire straits and destocking a lot of properties without it," Mr Fischer said.

"To the south and west of Wangaratta, they are still struggling and destocking because of water problems.

"Certain areas are starting to green up, if we get another rain in two weeks we will be away in some areas, if we have no rain for a month we will be worse than what we were."

Morgan Davies, Elders, said East Gippsland didn't get the widespread relief it desperately needed, and described the rain as "spasmodic at best".

"The further east you go the higher rainfalls, the mountain area - Omeo, Benambra and Ensay - is still quite dry, while Cann River is very wet and having a good season and Bairnsdale has had a start but certainly needs more," Mr Davies said.

He said many cattle producers in the region couldn't wait for an April autumn break, with most having turned off a lot of stock by March.

"We've had a little start in some places, but some need more for a real start - we are heading into the third year of [a failed autumn], so everyone is keen for a break that's for sure," he said.

Cann River has had 68mm for March, with 50.6mm falling at Orbost and 56.8mm at Gelantipy, down to 31.4mm at Bairnsdale and 14.8mm at Sale.

In the Western District, there has been just 12mm of rain in Hamilton for the month to date, and 18.2 at Mortlake, with coastal falls higher at 28.2mm for Warrnambool and 40.2mm at Nullawarre.

Looking at the central north, Charlton is up to 17.2mm, while St Arnaud has had 10.4mm.

Further west, Horsham has had less than 4mm, while Bendigo, Ballarat and Ararat have had 7mm or less for March.


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