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Experimental Rainfall Recording

Hi Folks,

I am going to try to produce an ongoing graph of the daily rainfall, over the next few years. I have been thinking of this for quite a while and think I have a workable solution for my size of operation. I need to combine accuracy, with robust data collection and storage. To this end I am collecting the daily incremental rainfall readings from my rain gauge in a way that I can graph them and also add in the reading of the water level gauge at Number 2 Ramp.

I am also hoping to be able to record the temperature of the lake water at this gauge as well to be able to present that in a graph. This is the trickier reading. As we all know water is constantly leveling across the whole lake, a 10cm jump at the gauge goes across the whole lake. However I am expecting that taking the temperature at Number 2 Boat Ramp will be a somewhat isolated reading and may not be at all representative of the whole lake. My assumption is based on the fact that the lake is made of two arms, Toorloo Arm and Nowa Nowa Arm that gradually get shallower as the tributary entry points are reached. The fish move around seasonally depending on whether they are spawning or not, just to give one example of their life cycle effecting distribution. Many people are sure this is related to temperature.

It will be rewarding to investigate the temperature variation further and do some samples up the arms and determine what the distribution of temperatures might be. Spawning may be more related to shallow water and the feed available for fry in those areas. Anthropomorphism is very hard to shake off, and we must always be on our guard to avoid quick assumptions on what would suit us humans e.g. warmth means comfort!

Here is the Rainfall data file if you are interested rainfall.csv

And here is the beginning of the chart which for the moment will be updated manually, from time to time.

A cumulative graph of the Rainfall at Lake Tyers Beach
This time I have chosen to show the rainfall for every 24 hours for the last 7 months, rather than the cumulative rainfall. As we head towards another winter, I hope to show that it is the amount of rain that falls in a short period that influences the level of the lake most.  High rainfall in a short period of time has less time to seep away, whereas small amounts more frequently has time to seep away under the bar.  However as the sand in the bar gets clogged with micro debris from the lake less and less seeps away.

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Special thank you to the Arduino community for sharing all their good ideas with everybody else, Grazie ragazzi!!! And also to Beck and Daff next door who keeps a great rain gauge near mine for double checking the electronics system. Cheers mate!