Major turnaround in Western Australian wheat yield rankings Thursday 06 August 2015
NEWS RELEASE FROM AEGIC
The latest Western Australian yield ranking maps produced by the Australian Export Grain Innovation Centre (AEGIC) have revealed one of the largest mid-season turnarounds in the State’s expected wheat yields seen since the maps began 18 years ago.
AEGIC agri-meteorologist Dr David Stephens said during late June yield rankings in much of the north-eastern wheatbelt were on track to be in the lowest 10 per cent to 30% of years.
However falls of 50 millimetres to more 100mm at the very end of July and early August have caused yield rankings to jump into the top 30% of years and in the case of Dalwallinu the highest 10% in 100 years.
“The main reason for the yield improvement is that most of the rain fell slowly over a number of days and this enabled the moisture to move down into the plant rooting zone and replenish drying soils,” Dr Stephens said.
“This excellent reserve of soil moisture will now form a ‘bank’ that crops can draw on through to the end of the season.”
When the AEGIC crop model STIN (moisture stress index) was run on 27 July, and then 2 August 2015, shire yield predictions increased by more than 0.7 tonne per hectare in Koorda and Quairading, and between 0.6-0.68 t/ha in Bruce Rock, Dalwallinu, Goomalling, Mount Marshall, Trayning and Wonga Ballidu.
At a state level, the average wheat yields increased from 1.53t/ha to 2.02t/ha over the same interval of a week.
“For many growers who were facing another dry season this turnaround in crop yield prospects would certainly be welcomed.”
Dr Stephens said unfortunately there were some areas from Irwin to the Western parts of Morawa, and a region from Cuballing to Dumbleyung that missed out on the heavier falls and where crop yield rankings remain below average.
For more information see AEGIC's website http://www.aegic.org.au/.