News

Cold and dry July for Echuca district

By Ivy Jensen

ECHUCA-MOAMA experienced its coldest morning in three years last month.

And it was only 2°C off July’s coldest morning on record.

The lowest temperature was -3.4°C, recorded on July 24, which was 6.4°C below average.

That day, the mercury only reached a top of 10.7°C — 2.8°C below average.

It was a cold month overall, recording seven below-zero temperatures.

“Overall, the average minimum temperature was 2.6°C for the month which, compared to the long-term average, is 1.2°C lower than usual,” Bureau of Meteorology climatologist Jonathan Pollock said.

“The persistent high pressure during the month diverted cold fronts south, and night-time temperatures fell quicker.”

Frosty temperatures have continued this month, with the past three mornings recording lows of -1°C, 0.4°C and 1.6°C.

Frost photos taken at a Caldwell farm. Photo by Natalie Durrant

However, mornings are expected to warm up over the next week, with minimum temperatures forecast to range from 4°C to 8°C.

“Looking further ahead and into September, Echuca has a high chance of warmer than average temperatures,” Mr Pollock said.

Along with lower than normal temperatures, Echuca-Moama also experienced below-average rainfall for July.

A total of 21.5mm fell, which is about half the monthly average.

However, our yearly rainfall total to the end of July of 318.9mm is almost double the figure at the same time last year, when only 169.1mm had fallen.

But local farmers said rain was again needed to boost crops.

“Frost at the moment’s not too bad for croppers, as the crops aren’t in flower yet, although some early canola is almost at that stage,” Caldwell farmer Natalie Durrant said.

“It is sapping the moisture out of the soil, so some good rain will be great.”

Rain is forecast for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Echuca-Moama experienced its wettest July in 1923, with 105.1mm, while the 1.8mm in 1859 was the driest July on record.

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