Across the North Island, soil moisture levels decreased nearly everywhere during the past week. In the South Island, soil moisture levels decreased during the past week with meagre rainfall in the north and east.
For more than a year a frozen slab of leopard seal poo sat in a NIWA freezer. The poo, known scientifically as scat and about the size of two bread rolls, is as good as gold for leopard seal researchers.
Areas deemed hotspots have expanded significantly during the past week in the North Island, while in the South Island the previous hotspot encompassing Nelson and nearby portions of Tasman has continued to strengthen during the past week.
The previous hotspot in the Far North dissipated around the Aupouri Peninsula in the past week, but has spread south into northern Whangarei and Kaipara districts. The current hotspot in Tasman could strengthen in the next week, while central Canterbury may see a new hotspot form in the coming week.
The previous hotspot in the Far North has expanded in size during the past week, now encompassing much of the eastern Far North and the Aupouri Peninsula. A hotspot remains in place across Nelson and nearby portions of Tasman, but no other South Island hotspots are in effect at this time.
A weekly update describing soil moisture across the country to help assess whether severely to extremely dry conditions are occurring or imminent. Regions experiencing these soil moisture deficits are deemed “hotspots”. Persistent hotspot regions have the potential to develop into drought.
As a young child growing up on an Irish farm, one of Eimear Egan’s chores was to regularly clean out the well from where her family drew its drinking water. In the well lived a large eel that, no matter how many times it was shifted, just kept coming back.
Based at Bream Bay, Whangarei, Crispin Middleton is also an acclaimed underwater photographer and the recipient of numerous photography awards. His work regularly appears in New Zealand Geographic, dive magazines, scientific journals and conservation/ government documents.
Across the North Island, soil moisture levels either decreased slightly or remained the same during the past week. Across the South Island, soil moisture remained near normal or above normal in the central and eastern part of the island during the past week while areas in the west have near normal or below normal soil moisture.
The driest soils across the North Island compared to normal for this time of the year are found in an area stretching from coastal Manawatu-Whanganui northeast to Taupo. The driest soils across the South Island compared to normal for this time of the year are found in far southern Westland District. A small hotspot has emerged in Nelson in the past week.