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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:On the Differences in Rainy Season Characteristics between Extended Dry and Wet Spells in Swaziland
Author:Van Regenmortal, G.
Periodical:Eastern and Southern Africa Geographical Journal
Notes:biblio. refs., ills.
Geographic terms:Swaziland - Eswatini
Southern Africa
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Environment, Ecology
Rainy season
Abstract:Southern Africa, including Botswana, is the scene for a quasi-18 year oscillation in annual rainfall at least since the beginning of the twentieth century. This fluctuation is probably modulated by a parallel large-scale atmospheric mechanism. In this paper rainy seasons are stratified into above and below normal annual rainfall years and the two resulting data groups are examined for statistically significant differences. Apart from start, finish and duration of the rainy season, rainfall characteristics addressed here are number of rain days, rainfall intensity, occurrence of rainless spells and spatial extent of rainfall. Extended wet spells with extra rain days occur chiefly during the peak rainy season months of January and February. What probably contributes most to a year having an annual rainfall record above or below normal is the number of January and February days with rainfall exceeding 15 mm. The longer duration of the rainy season which first of all results from its extension in April contributes to above normal annual rainfall too, but to a lesser degree. Bibliogr.