It could be the first taste of what is expected to be an early wet season for the Top End – and possibly a higher than average cyclone season.
“The main difference today is the cloudy conditions across the Top End,” NT Duty Forecaster Billy Lynch told ABC Radio Thursday morning.
“We’re seeing some clouds stream down from Indonesia. It’s spreading towards Darwin. On the radar, there are a few very light bits of shower coming out of those clouds as well.
“Apart from that though, any showers that will be formed today will be up in the Tiwi Islands down around the Southwest corner.”
He said showers could fall on the west coast and in the Darwin and Palmerston area on Friday night until Saturday.
“Definitely tomorrow, there’s going to be a pick-up in the showers.”
The BOM said a strong trough will sweep across southern parts of the Territory during Thursday and Friday.
Severe thunderstorms with damaging winds are expected in parts of the southwest today, but a little less likely near AliceSprings, BOM said.
Rains over the two days are estimated to be only 5-10mm, up to 25mm near the SA border.
70 per cent chance of La Niña forming
The BOM had previously forecasted a 70 per cent chance of a La Niña forming in the coming months, expected to bring an early rainfall to the Top End.
Climatologist Naomi Benger told the ABC in August that La Nina could mean a few different things for the Australian region.
“One of them is enhanced rainfall for central, eastern and northern Australia,” she said.
“So while some areas might welcome that bit of extra rain if they’ve been in drought, it can lead to an elevated risk of flooding.”
La Nina events are also associated with heightened risk of cyclones as well as cool daytime temperatures.
“There is generally more cloud and more soil moisture, which means the daytime temperatures could be a little bit lower on average,” she said.