Seven Year Drought Killed 40% Of The Livestock In Australia – Wheat Crop Destroyed

The “Federation Drought”, 1895-1902

Many of Australia’s worst droughts occur when one or two very dry years follow several years of generally below average rainfall. Such was the case in the so-called “Federation drought”, which began in the mid 1890s and reached its devastating climax in late 1901 and 1902.

The five years leading up to Federation (January 1901) saw intermittent dry spells over most of the country, particularly in 1897 and 1899; in most of Queensland, dry conditions were virtually unbroken from 1897. Most other parts of the country had reasonable rain in 1900 and early 1901, but with the coming of spring 1901 very dry weather set in across eastern Australia. By February 1902 concerns were expressed about Sydney’s water supply, and the New South Wales Government declared 26 February a day of “humiliation and prayer” for rain in that state. Similar declarations were made in Queensland in April and Victoria in September, as the drought worsened.

Despite the pleas for divine intervention, things only got worse. Though there was some winter-spring rain in Victoria and NSW, cold weather nullified its usefulness. In Queensland, enormous sheep and cattle losses were being reported by August. On some far western properties, cattle numbers plummeted from tens of thousands to mere hundreds. Rivers in western Queensland dried up; at Bourke, the Darling River virtually ran dry. Further south, towns near the Murray River such as Mildura, Balranald and Deniliquin – at that time dependent on the river for transport – suffered badly. The Australian wheat crop was all but lost, with close to the lowest yields of the century.

BOM – Australian Climate Extremes-Drought

About stevengoddard

Just having fun
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Seven Year Drought Killed 40% Of The Livestock In Australia – Wheat Crop Destroyed

  1. ozspeaksup says:

    and then there were more droughts just like it..
    I remember a few years back now..probably the late 80s? when they were having to shoot sheep into mass pits. thousands of them, priced at 50c the bullet cost equalled the sheeps cost.
    farmers sent stock to saleyards and got Bills for handling/transport that had them in debt, the sold price was less than costs.
    we manage to grow some damn good wheat etc in areas with soils usa would run from, topsoil is lucky to be a few inches at best, with 12 inch rain considered survivable and summer temps of high 30s to 40c as normal.
    that why the recent to do over supposed drought doesnt get much chop down under.
    WHY??? the hell isnt your govt having huge water rationing to cities to help make water available to farms? no car washing no lawn watering etc.

    However the recent greeninvasion via parliament here in Aus, is seeing people who could farm and were willing to fight hard to grow food in hard walking off, or suiciding, due to Govt agenda 21 ecofreak green and red tape gutting the use of land water etc.
    Kyoto..useless eurodriven bullshit!
    admitted to do nothing useful for anyopne, made some farms unuseable and thereby unsaleable.
    taxes on dam water, 10% untaxed the rest charged for.
    govt buying back water rights for millions, thereby rendering land useless for anything.
    towns and associated industries all go broke.
    classic was buying water rights back for a property that didnt even flow TO the Murray Darling.
    and couple of days ago..selling a huge chunk of Cubbie station, to the chinese is supposedly??/ in our nations interest.. water storage as big as syndney harbour? or so they say.,
    mind you,, thats Only when we get rain to fill it, otherwise its a dry spot..very dry, last owners went broke waiting for rains.

  2. tckev says:

    But now there is a carbon tax in Australia this will never happen again. /sarcoff

  3. ntesdorf says:

    Now that’s what I call a drought!
    However it won’t happen again as Gillard fixed it with a Carbon Dioxide Tax!

  4. Don Gaddes says:

    The exact equivalent Five Year ‘Dry’ Cycle is due again over Australia from early January 2015.
    It is not a ‘seven year drought’, rather it consists of a Three Solar/Earth Year ‘Dry’ Cycle, followed by a ‘Wet’/Normal 2018 that will probably be ‘dry’ due to the intensity of the previous Three year ‘Dry’ Cycle – and followed by a One Solar/Earth Year ‘Dry’ Cycle in 2019.
    This ‘Five Year Dry’ last happened over Australia in 1997.
    It also happened in 1900, etc.
    The exact derivation and forecasting of these ‘Dry’ cycles was achieved by Alex S Gaddes in his book ‘Tomorrow’s Weather’ (1990) Among other things, he showed that these ‘Dry’ Cycles move from West to East ( 30 degrees longitude/month with the Westward Solar orbit of the Earth’s Magnetic Field.) Thus, what happens in Australia, happens in the US. five months before.
    These ‘Dry’ Cycles initiate around the 110 degrees longitude East of Prime (Beijing,) so Australia is one of the last countries affected in their orbit.
    An updated version of the above work, (with ‘Dry’ Cycle forecasts to 2055) is available as a free pdf from

    • Don Gaddes says:

      ‘It also happened in 1900’ – should read 1907. There is an 18 year interval between repeat ‘Dry Cycle’ hierarchies.
      The inclusion of a ‘Dry’ 2018 will probably be due to the Lunar Metonic Cycle, due in 2016.

  5. sabretoothed says:

    Did you see the Page is gone, BOM pulled it!!!

  6. Jamie Spry says:

    Reblogged this on Climatism and commented:
    AUSTRALIA’S climate when CO2 was at “safe levels”…

    • Don Gaddes says:

      2018 has been ‘Wet/Normal’ over Australia from January, ( as predicted by Alex S. Gaddes in ‘Tomorrow’s Weather’ (1990) The Lunar Metonic Cycle of 2016 did not affect the ‘Wet/Normal’ Period. See the 2018 ‘update’ – available as a free pdf from

Leave a Reply to Jamie Spry Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s