Concerns that Wanaka’s recent dry spell will evolve into a drought are rising following drier than normal soil moisture levels for the time of year.
The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) found in its latest report last week that soil moisture levels had generally decreased across the South Island, with warm conditions leaving many places breaking records for the driest November.
Federated Farmers Otago president Phill Hunt said that although Otago was dry throughout, there was no major cause for concern yet.
“Any rain would be welcome but we don’t need it all at once, as we’ve seen with the storms over Roxburgh. Hopefully, we’ll get a bit of rain before the tourists all hoard into town,” he said.
As the Wanaka Sun went to print, the MetService ten day forecast showed not a drop of rain, and NIWA’s latest report predicted rainfall below normal levels for the first half of December.
Photo: Nikki Heath / Wanaka Sun
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