Our rainfall and pasture growth – comparing current seasons with the past

This is the second in a series of four webinars focusing on Getting the “Inside Edge”  in grazing land management.

Queensland (like all of Australia) is subject to a highly variable climate, but in terms of rainfall or pasture growth, how do we rate one year from another?

For over 20 years the eye-catching multi-map poster view of Australian rainfall has been offered to grazing land managers (graziers, extension practitioners, consultants and researchers) operating in rural Australia via the Queensland Government’s Long Paddock website. These maps demonstrate the variability of any one year compared to 128 years of historical data records. Recently, additional posters have been created to provide multi-year mapping information on “wet” and “dry” sequence periods for Queensland, pasture production and past tropical cyclones.

In this presentation, Grant Stone (Principal Scientist with the Queensland Department of Environment and Science) discusses:

• the components and trends for the well-known Australian variable rainfall poster;
• the patterns for the new counterparts;
• how and where to access the posters; and
• an introduction to the new online multi map-app.

You can watch the full recording or use the the playlist below to jump to the start of a particular section within the presentation.  28:47 published 29 October 2018 by FutureBeefAu.

Download a copy of the ‘Our rainfall and pasture growth – comparing current seasons with the past’ presentation slides (PDF, 3.4MB).

Full recording



  1. Our rainfall and pasture growth – comparing current seasons to the past.
  2. Rainfall and pasture growth ‘roadmap’.
  3. Rainfall poster page.
  4. Australia’s variable rainfall.
  5. Queensland’s extended wet and dry periods explained.
  6. Queensland’s extended wet and dry periods and the impacted drought sequences.
  7. Finding the drought maps (The Long Paddock website).
  8. Is El Nino acting alone or are there other drought climate drivers?
  9. Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) – what is it?
  10. Effects and relationship on Sea Surface Temperatures between ENSO and IPO.
  11. Effects and relationship on rainfall between ENSO and IPO.
  12. The ‘Learning from History’ report.
  13. Rainfall poster with tropical cyclone track mapping. 
  14. The pasture growth poster.
  15. AussieGRASS maps and data.
  16. The ‘Map App’ – poster visualisation.
  17. Conclusion