Geneva, Sep 1 (IANS) The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) on Tuesday said a mature and strong El Nino was now present in the tropical Pacific Ocean, with the possibility to strengthen further before the end of the year.

The WMO said during August, east-central tropical Pacific Ocean surface temperatures have ranged between 1.3 and 2 Celsius degrees above average, exceeding El Nino thresholds by around one Celsius degree, indicating that the current El Nino was at a very significant level, Xinhua news agency reported.

During the last several months, temperatures below the surface of the tropical Pacific to the east of the international dateline have been substantially above average. This weather effect was in response to persistent episodes of significant weakening of the trade winds.

The current excess subsurface heat had the potential to maintain or strengthen the above average sea surface temperatures in the coming months.

Experts have suggested that surface water temperatures in the east-central tropical Pacific ocean are likely to exceed two degrees Celsius above average, potentially placing this El Nino event among the four strongest events since 1950.

WMO said the peak strength of this El Nino, expected sometime during October to January 2016.

Historically, a mature El Nino event is likely to have maximum strength between October and January of the following year, and often to persist through much of the first quarter of that year before decaying.