The Western Australian beef industry

Page last updated: Wednesday, 17 November 2021 - 11:49am

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

Climate and geography of Western Australia (WA)

The climate of WA is defined by seasonal rainfall distribution (Figure 2).

Figure 2 Seasonal rainfall zones for Australia (source: Bureau of Meteorology (BOM), 2015)

The South-West of WA has a Mediterranean climate with cool wet winters and hot dry summers.

Agricultural beef production tends to occur in the higher rainfall regions (Figure 2, turquoise area).

The state’s grains industry is based in the drier agricultural regions integrated with livestock production.

The Mediterranean climate zone covers approximately one quarter of WA’s land area and has an annual average rainfall between 300–1200mm (Figure 3).

The growing season varies from 5–9 months.

The central coastal and arid regions of the state receive lower rainfall (Figure 2, yellow area).

The climate is characterised by cool winters and hot summers.

Rainfall ranges from less than 200mm to over 500mm annually near the coast (Figure 3).

While rainfall can occur during winter, annual rainfall is often dominated by monsoonal rain associated with cyclones and large tropical lows.

The far north of the state (Figure 2, orange area) is characterised by summer dominant rainfall.

Summers are hot and wet with high humidity and cyclonic rainfall while the winters are cool to warm and dry. Annual rainfall can vary from between 400–1500mm and is highly variable (Figure 3).

Figure 3 Average annual rainfall for Western Australia (source: BOM, 2015)

Contact information

Rebecca Butcher
+61 (0)8 9651 0540
Trevor Price
+61 (0)8 9166 4026