Cook Islands Meteorological Service director Arona Ngari said the hot and sticky conditions were due to northerly winds that have persisted for the last three weeks.
This, he added, was caused by a trough to the west of the Cook Islands that had been “hanging there” rather than moving along to the east.
“The northerly winds have brought a lot of moisture from the north, thus raising the temperature above the norm for us.
Ngari said people had been commenting on the unseasonably hot and humid weather since last week, and the bad news was that as long the trough stayed to the west, the conditions would persist.
Rarotonga experienced average temperatures of between 27 and 31 degrees Celsius earlier this week, with 3 degrees lifting the mercury on Monday at 2pm.
On Wednesday Ngari said temperatures had averaged 31 degrees Celsius between midday and 5pm over the previous five days.
“The moisture brought from the north is apparent with the rain and the thunderstorms that have been affecting us,” he added. Some Rarotonga residents have told CI News they cannot recall experiencing such hot and humid weather in March in previous years – with one long-time resident saying he could not remember it ever being so hot during the wet season. However the heat seems to have been good for retailers, with numerous people seen buying fans to cool off.