Saturday, 4 June 2016

All the Monaro is a wet patch



After my last post about going to wet places of the Monaro (several of which were very dry) it only seemed fair to start this post by acknowledging that today we drove for 4 hours through continual rain.  I'll have a few images for that later in this post.  We were heading for Mallacoota for which the weather forecast on 2 June by Meteye looked like this:



If anything it has got worse since then.  There is now a flood watch specifically mentioning the Genoa River catchment. 
In the 24 hours to 9 am Saturday rainfall totals recorded in the East Gippsland Catchments were generally below 5mm with isolated higher totals of 10mm at The Gorge and 25mm at Genoa in the Genoa River catchment.
Rain and possible thunderstorms are expected to develop across East Gippsland on Saturday and will persist overnight and through Sunday.
Rainfall totals of 20 to 40 mm with isolated higher totals are expected during Saturday. Further rainfall totals of 50 to 100 mm with isolated higher totals are expected during Sunday.
Significant stream rises are expected with areas of minor to moderate flooding likely to develop during Sunday particularly in the Snowy, Cann and Genoa catchments.
I had had a conversation with our friends who are kind enough to let us use their place, about whether climate change was leading to the area being occupied by White-headed Pigeons and fruit bats.  This had concluded with talk about the Inlet rising to inhibit lawn mowing.  Having read the flood warning I wondered where I could acquire a kelp-filter for the Victa.

We did a dog walk this morning without getting wet but it was drizzling as we drove off.  I will point out that Frances was driving so I could snap away with the camera.
 It was raining harder by the time we got to Queanbeyan,
 As we got on to the Monaro Highway at Royalla this large truck was in front of us.
 It was chucking up a lot of spray so Francie stayed behind it, especially as there were pelicans on the road driving white  cars without their lights on.  Why don't the cops give a few of them tickets rather than persecuting folk for being a tad over the ridiculous speed limits  through areas where road works might be undertaken if the CFMEU members present stopped drinking coffee?  Fortunately for our trip time it pulled over and we continued.

A bit further down the road we came to this spiffy new bush fire warning sign.  It was on the Low-Moderate level.  We thought that just as the Sparks and Wildfires "people" had added a Catastrophic level at the top end, they should add a "Challenge category at the bottom for days like this.
Once we turned on to Imlay Rd we found that a catastrophe had happened with all the understorey burnt out of the woodland on both sides of the road.  Of course this is aforementioned NSW Government agencies at work not free-lance arsonists.  In the spirit of interstate rivalry their Victorian colleagues have done a similar number on Croajingolong NP as we approached Mallacoota.

A nice touch for the drive was spotting a male Lyrebird scampering across Karbeethong Rd as we drove in.  It was still raining.
The painter has finished his efforts and the house looks magnificent.

I emptied 63mm out of the rain gauge, but don't know what the period of accumulation was.  Lets see what we collect over the next few days: we've got lotsa rain-gear with us!

The rain gear just got used to go and check the fruit bat situation.  They have disappeared.  I can see two possible reasons for this:
  1. The Angophora has stopped flowering here so they have gone elsewhere to feed: or
  2. They can sense what is going to happen with the East Coast Low combining with a king tide and realise that their roosts, being only about 10m above ground level, are going to be inundated.
There were also no Cormorants on the jetties.  As they are not noted nectivores this gives weight to point 2.  By 2100hrs we had received 43mm of rain.

A third reason for the bat disappearance is that they have gone to Batemans Bay.  It is notable that Eurobodalla's solution is to chop down all the trees and play loud music: situation normal in Batemans Bay.

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