Monday, January 18, 2010

Chennai - Today's minimum temperature was 22.0°C (6:42am)
Chennai - Humidity .. 70% ... bit on higher side at this time of year.
Chennai - Touched a max of 29.8°C (1:04pm).. a warm & high humidity day.

Agumbe may be wet, but Hulikal is wetter

If Agumbe continues to receive less rain, it may lose its tag of the rain capital of the state to Hulikal, a neighbouring range in the Western Ghats.
Agumbe in Thirthahalli taluk of Shimoga district is dubbed as the ‘Cherrapunjee of the South’. But Cherrapunjee itself is no longer the wettest place on Earth. It lost its crown to Mawsynram, also in Meghalaya.

While Hulikal received above-average rainfall of 3,231 mm this year, Agumbe, till July 15, had received only 2,807.2 mm of rainfall against its average of 3,070 mm.

With hardly five months left for the year to end, a senior officer at Agumbe Rainforest Research Station doubted whether Agumbe can record even average rainfall this year.

The station is the only permanent rainforest research station in the country. What is more worrisome for officials is that if the trend continues for another couple of years, Agumbe will lose its position as the “wettest place in the state’’.

No one was happier than Ravi Bhat, a local at Hulikal. After all, he had been measuring the rainfall near his home in Hulikal and comparing it with data provided by Agumbe Rainforest Research Station.

“I have been closely observing the rain pattern in Agumbe and Hulikal with rain gauges over the past five years. And I am quite convinced that Hulikal is now the state’s wettest place, though I have no proper data to substantiate it,’’ Bhat said.

Since the authenticity of data that come from Hulikal is questionable, meteorologists in Bangalore consider the whole exercise of comparing the rainfall in these two places quite meaningless. “Unlike Agumbe, there is no meteorological office at Hulikal. Nor are any trained meteorological observers posted there. Unskilled people posted there take the readings,’’ said a senior officer, adding that Hulikal should also have a meteorological observatory like the one at Agumbe, with qualified staff.
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Agumbe may be wet, but Hulikal is wetter ...
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