SAHEL WEATHER AND CROP SITUATION REPORTGlobal Information and Early Warning System on food and agriculture
Report No.2 - 11 July 2000
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Rains started in late April or May in southern Burkina Faso, Chad, Guinea Bissau and Mali, in the extreme south-west of Niger and the extreme south-east of Senegal. They progressed northwards in June in the rest of Senegal, The Gambia and southern Mauritania. First rains have also been registered in late June in Cape Verde. Satellite imagery for the first dekad of July shows that cloud coverage moved northwards, notably over western Senegal and Mauritania, central and eastern Niger and Chad. Therefore, above normal rains have been registered during this dekad in Senegal, Mauritania and western Mali. By contrast, precipitation remained more limited in central Mali and most parts of Burkina Faso.
Plantings are progressing following the onset of the rains. Crops are emerging satisfactorily in southern Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Niger and Senegal. Improved rains are needed in Burkina Faso to avoid water stress on recently planted coarse grains. Seed availibility is generally adequate following above average to record harvests in most Sahelian countries in 1999.
Pastures are starting to regenerate. The pest situation is mostly calm. Grasshopper
attacks are reported in Chad and Niger. A few Desert Locusts were reported in
mid-June in northern Mauritania. Some scattered solitary adults were also seen
in central A´r, Niger.
From 26 to 29 June in the Agrhymet Centre of Niamey, the CILSS (ComitÚ inter-Etats de Lutte contre la SÚcheresse au Sahel) organised a regional meeting on the current crop and food supply situation in the Sahel. The participants reviewed the prevailing situation at the start of the rainy season in each country. They analysed the seasonal weather forecast made by the ACMAD (African Centre of Meteorological Applications for Development) and the Agrhymet Centre for the Third Forum on Seasonal Climate Prediction (PRESAO) (see Sahel report no1). Final 1999 production figures were given for Mauritania and balance sheets were reviewed accordingly. Information was given on the current food supply situation and the on-going food assistance in each country. Markets are generally well supplied and prices much lower than previous years following above average to record harvests in most countries in late 1999.
Following technical or financial difficulties encountered in 1999 in several countries, the status of the preparation of national production surveys was reviewed in each country. The Agrhymet Centre has provided funds for national services. It has scheduled technical missions in July in Chad, Guinea Bissau, Mauritania and Senegal to discuss with national authorities the implementation of this year's survey.
Some presentations on methodological aspects were done, notably by the World
Food Program on its Vulnerability Assessment and Mapping programme. Under the
framework of this programme, an inventory of existing national statistical sources
on food security in the Sahel and the setting-up of the "Sahelian Food Aid Monitoring
System" (SAFAMS), a new data base on final destination of food aid at sub-national
level have started. The AP3A project of the Agrhymet Centre also presented a
contribution for a methodology on how to integrate breeding in the assessment
of structurally vulnerable zones in several sahelian countries. The final report
and the "avis" prepared at the end of the meeting are available with the CILSS
BURKINA FASO CAPE-VERDE CHAD GAMBIA GUINEA-BISSAU
MALI MAURITANIA NIGER SENEGAL