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September 2016 Climate Summary

The Western Cape received most of its rainfall in the West Coast, Overberg and Eden districts, while poor rainfall (red and orange areas implying respectively less than 6mm and 11mm) was experienced in most of the Central Karoo (slide 1).    

Comparing the month’s rainfall against the historical long term means (slide 2) indicated that above normal rainfall occurred in the West Coast, Overberg and Eden districts.  Below normal rainfall was on the other hand dominant in the Cape Winelands and Central Karoo districts.

slide 1


slide 2



Slide 3 summarizes data from various weather stations which take into account total monthly rainfall, mean monthly maximum (Tmax) and minimum temperatures (Tmin) for September 2016 including corresponding historical long term means.  The lowest rainfall were recorded predominantly in the Central Karoo (e.g. Murraysburg, Prince Albert, Merweville and Rietbron), while above normal rainfall were observed in places like for instance Citrusdal, Caledon, Ladismith and George.   


Monthly mean temperatures recorded at various weather stations remained relatively similar to corresponding long term means, except for some less extreme anomalies remaining present.  Tmax for the various weather stations ranged between 17.1 to 25.1 ºC (long term average 17.5 to 25.8 ºC) while Tmin ranged between 3.3 to 10.8 ºC (long term average 2.6 to 10.5 ºC).  Tmax anomalies ranged between -1.3 to 2.8 ºC, while Tmin anomalies ranged between -3.0 to 1 ºC.  


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slide 3

Slide 3

As for extreme events regarding monthly mean temperatures, Murraysburg and Klawer experienced respectively the lowest Tmin and highest Tmax in the province for September 2016 and for the corresponding long term means.

Slide 4 displays a brief summary on the state of provincial dam levels averaging 63% (last year 72%) on 3th October.  While increasing slightly from the previous month’s level, the overall status clearly remained lower compared to water levels of previous years. 

The map illustrating growing conditions (slide 5) indicate increasing photosynthetic activity in the Matzikama region (moving from red / orange to orange / neutral / green patches) and parts of Central Karoo which were subjected to drought conditions earlier this year (moving from red to neutral / green patches).  On the other hand the winter cereal crops are clearly reaching maturity stage by shedding their green foliage in favour of the lighter beige appearance, which is typical for this time of the year.


slide 4

Slide 4

slide 5

Slide 5

Climate predictions

ENSO conditions remained neutral (slide 6) and is forecasted to continue into next autumn.  The current seasonal forecasts (slides 7 & 8) favour normal to above normal rains for the Western Cape.  Temperatures forecasts (SAWS) indicate low probability for warmer conditions along the southern and coastal regions and below normal temperatures to the more northern regions.  Again due to the high uncertainty in forecasts, users are advised to regularly review updated medium and short term forecasts to identify any intermediate change.

slide 6

Slide 6

slide 7

Slide 7

slide 8

Slide 8

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Agri-Oulook March 2016

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