A weather outlook for the next few months suggests Otago
might be in for a warmer and drier time.
Niwa's January to March outlook released yesterday suggested
temperatures were likely to be average or above average in
the region while rainfall totals and river flows were most
likely to be in the near normal category.
The improved outlook was the result of indications the
equatorial Pacific Ocean would continue in a neutral state
for the next three months.
The conditions were forecast to also continue throughout the
autumn and early winter, but El Nino conditions were likely
to develop by mid-year.
But for the next three months lower than normal pressures
were forecast in the Tasman Sea, and north of New Zealand,
while higher than normal pressure conditions were forecast to
the southeast of the country.
This was expected to bring a weak flow from the northeasterly
quarter, the outlook said.
Sea surface temperatures were expected to remain above
average around the whole of New Zealand in the coming three