Good news on horizon for farmers

Manawatu farmers have some good news on the horizon as warm and wet conditions are predicted for the coming months.

Temperatures are likely to be average or above average for the Manawatu region from September to November, according to NIWA's seasonal climate outlook.

NIWA's principal scientist Brett Mullan said it was good news for farmers, with rainfall totals, soil moisture levels and river flows all equally likely to be in the normal or above normal range.

''We're looking at a fairly warm spring...I would think it's pretty good for farmers.''

But he said there is still a chance of a cold snap with southerlies and frosts at this time of year.

''We're not entirely out of the cold period yet.''

Similar conditions are expected across the entire North Island, Mullan said.

International guidance indicates that the chance for El Nino developing over the September to November period is about 55 per cent.

NIWA scientists said that for New Zealand, El Nino events typically reach their peak during summer, when they are related to stronger or more frequent westerly winds over the New Zealand region. 

Such a climate pattern typically leads to drier conditions in eastern areas and more rain in western areas of the country.

Manawatu Standard