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Higher Water Levels in Rudall River, Australia

22S 122.9E

March 19th, 2013 Category: Lakes, Rivers

Australia – March 10th, 2013

Lake Dora, visible in the upper left quadrant of this image of Western Australia, is a seasonal salt lake that lies between the vegetated sand fields of the Great Sandy and Gibson Deserts. The Rudall River occasionally brings water to Lake Dora.

The Rudall River is an ephemeral river in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Its headwaters lie below the Watrara Range near Island Hill and flow eastward until it discharges into Lake Dora. Here, Lake Dora’s water levels appear high, and several large pools of water can be observed along the river’s course, due to heavy rains from Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S). Lake Disappointment, in the lower left quadrant, also shows higher-than-usual water levels.


Popcorn Clouds Around Lake Mackay, Australia – March 18th, 2013

22.5S 128.6E

March 18th, 2013 Category: Clouds, Image of the day, Lakes

Australia – March 9th, 2013

The often dry Lake Mackay, the largest of hundreds of ephemeral salt lakes scattered throughout Western Australia and the Northern Territory, shows the presence of water in this image, taken after Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) drenched the region. The popcorn clouds dotting the skies around the lake are also an indication of rapid plant growth after rainfall in an arid area.

Sediment Plume from De Grey River, Australia

20.3S 118.5E

March 17th, 2013 Category: Rivers, Sediments

Australia – March 5th, 2013

The De Grey River is a river located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. It rises south of Callawa at the confluence of the Oakover and the Nullagine rivers and flows in a west-north-westerly direction eventually discharging into the Indian Ocean via Breaker Inlet about 80 km north-east of Port Hedland.

Its stream bed is 100 to 130 metres wide, dry throughout most of the year. Here, however, due to rainfall associated with Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S), much water was present in the river, carrying with it great loads of sediment. Here, that sediment can be seen emptying into the Indian Ocean and creating a greenish blue plume that extends far offshore.

Water in Lakes Dora and Disappointment, Australia

22S 122.9E

March 15th, 2013 Category: Deserts, Lakes

Australia – March 4th, 2013

Lake Dora (above) and Lake Disappointment (below) are two salt lakes in Western Australia that are often quite dry, only filling when there is extensive rainfall. Here, both lakes show the presence of water after heavy rains from Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) in late February and early March.

Lake Dora lies between the vegetated sand fields of the Great Sandy and Gibson Deserts, and occasionally receives water via the Rudall River. Lake Disappointment an ephemeral salt lake that typically remains dry except during very wet periods such as the 1900 floods and in many recent tropical wet seasons since 1967. It is at the northern side of the Little Sandy Desert and is also partially surrounded by sand dunes.

Water and Vegetation in Lake Mackay, Australia

22.5S 128.6E

March 14th, 2013 Category: Lakes, Salt Flats

Australia – March 7th, 2013

Lake Mackay is the largest of hundreds of ephemeral salt lakes scattered throughout Western Australia and the Northern Territory. The lake measures approximately 60 miles (100 kilometres) east-west and north-south. However, the lake is often rather dry and white in appearance due to its salinity and salt flats left behind after evaporation.

Here, however, heavy rains due to Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) have caused a greater influx of water into the lake. The darker areas indicate desert vegetation or algae present in moist areas. The brown patches are hills scattered across the eastern half of the lake and east-west-oriented sand ridges south of the lake.