Mixed reaction to rain over the Southern Downs

Average rain and regular storm activity is expected over much of Queensland during summer.
Average rain and regular storm activity is expected over much of Queensland during summer. Sarah Harvey

GRAIN growers midway through harvest breathed a sigh of relief when weekend storms failed to bring heavy falls to the Southern Downs.

But the reaction from other landholders was mixed as livestock producers and those waiting to plant forage crops disappointedly watched the storm clouds disappear.

On the Granite Belt agronomist Stephen Tancred said falls of up to 30mm had been measured, topping up moisture levels after two weeks of intermittent falls.

"Most horticultural enterprises here are irrigated and after two good seasons most have good on-farm supplies of water, but rain is always welcome," Mr Tancred said.

"The warmer weather has also helped the growing season." Around Warwick the weekend falls maxed out at around 12mm with many property owners measuring significantly less.

Pursehouse Rural Warwick manager Rob Doro said local livestock were anxiously awaiting wet weather, although conditions varied across the region.

"The grazing industry is definitely looking for rain so they can ease up on supplementary feeding," he said.

"But I am sure those in the middle of wheat harvesting were relieved not to get rain."

Weatherzone meteorologist Melissa MacKellar said the weekend falls brought Warwick's November rainfall total to 22mm.

"That is just 20% of the November average of 103mm," she explained.

Stanthorpe's wet weather tally was also below average at 32mm or just 40% of their November average of 82mm.

But Ms MacKellar said there was a chance of storms across the region from Thursday through to Saturday. "We are expecting late storms to develop on Thursday bringing falls of between 5-10mm," she said.

Looking ahead Ms MacKellar said the forecast was for average summer rainfall.

"We can definitely expect an active storm season, with plenty of moisture around."

Topics:  grain growers weather

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