Territory Stories

Katherine rural review



Katherine rural review


Northern Territory. Department of Primary Industry and Resources


Katherine rural review; E-Journals; PublicationNT; Katherine rural review






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Agriculture; Northern Territory; Katherine; Periodicals; Animal industry; Rural industries; Periodicals

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Northern Territory Government

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Katherine rural review


Edition 333

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application/pdf; application/msword




Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Northern Territory Government



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DEPARTMENT OF PRIMARY INDUSTRY AND RESOURCES Page 10 of 27 Katherine Rural Review What is an average season? Living in the good country, for now Robyn Cowley, Rangeland Scientist, Darwin Rain in your part of the world has been pretty reliable of late. But if youve only lived here for the last 20 years, which seems like a pretty long time really, you might not realise how good its actually been. You just happened to have lived through the wettest period in the last century. Check out the rainfall and modelled pasture growth over the last century at locations in the central and southern Victoria River Downs (VRD) and Sturt Plateau in figures 10 and 11 and table four below. Most of the last 20 years had above average growth, and any dryish year was backed up by an above average year. No drought, no worries. But if you were here between 1950 and 1970, it was a very dry affair, with mostly below average rainfall and pasture growth, although the pasture quality would have been a lot better, because in drier years the nutrients dont get diluted in larger plants. There tends to be cycles in wetter and drier periods. You can see the waves of moisture rolling in and out over the last century. But weve just had 20 wet years, so whats next? It depends who you ask. Some think that it might stay wetter, although it never has before, so this may be somewhat wishful thinking. Some scientists think that pollution in Asia has changed the monsoon to give us more rainfall. Well we better hope they dont clean up their act I guess! The climate change projections for future rainfall are not too bad in this part of the world (similar or more rainfall), unlike in southern, eastern and south west Australia, where it is projected to get drier. But unfortunately just about every climate change model has a different opinion about whats going to happen to rainfall, so your guess is probably as good as theirs. So, assuming the rainfall is roughly going to be the same, but still variable drier times are probably coming. Figure 10: Modelled pasture growth and rainfall (difference each year from the long term median) over time on an alluvial land type in the southern VRD.

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