Cordillera livestock death and crop damages from El Nino increasing
PDCC recommends declaration of Ifugao a calamity area
Lagawe, Ifugao (6 March) -- The dry spell continues to take its toll in the province with more than 200 heads of livestock animals dead due to starvation, heatstroke and diseases and about P80 million worth of crop damages.
The latest assessment conducted by the Provincial Veterinary Office (PVET) of Ifugao disclosed that there are now 188 heads of cattle, 6 carabaos and 48 goats that perished because of the existing drought.
The livestock casualties rose from the previous reported animal death toll of 58 cattle, two carabaos and 27 goats two weeks ago.
Provincial Veterinarian Dr. James Gopeng said that the estimated value of the dead livestock animals amount to P3,001, 200 and is expected to increase in the coming months if the drought will persist.
On the other hand, Raymund Bahatan of the Provincial Agriculture Office (PAENRO) here reported during the Provincial Disaster Coordinating Council (PDCC) meeting that there is also huge devastation of various crops in the different municipalities of Ifugao based on their latest ocular inspection. Cost of damages is estimated at almost P80 million.
Hardest hit are the municipalities of Aguinaldo which suffered 177 dead cattle and 7 goats followed by Alfonso Lista with 8 cattle, 2 carabaos and 5 goats, Lagawe with 2 dead carabaos, 3 cattle and 6 goats, Kiangan with 2 carabaos and 8 goats and Lamut with 19 goats dead.
Aguinaldo and Alfonso Lista also suffered the most in crop damages in corn and rice products costing P12 million and P21 million respectively and covering more than 1,000 hectares of land planted with these crops severely affected.
The PDCC placed the latest total value of livestock death and crops destroyed in Ifugao at P78, 500,000 covering vegetable crops, banana fruits, rice, corn and other agricultural products and livestock animals such as cattle, goat and carabaos.
The PVET said that they were not yet able to assess the losses in piggery and poultry industries so the amount of damages is not yet included. The PAENRO said they are getting the exact cost of the fish kill at the Magat Dam fish cages.
Because of the enormity of the devastations to livestock and crops, the PDCC recommended to the Provincial Government through the Sangguniang Panlalawigan to declare the province as calamity area.
Governor Teddy Baguilat Jr. Chairman of the PDCC, said that the members unanimously carried a motion to recommend to the SP to draft a resolution declaring the province in state of calamity.
Baguilat said that at the moment, the concerned agencies are conducting Information Education Campaign (IEC).
The PDCC also discussed drastic measures to mitigate the effects of the dry spell such as cloud seeding which until now is not producing rain but only clouds, livelihood assistance to the affected families and farmers, blackleg vaccination of the surviving cattle and carabaos, disposition of the livestocks, cut and carry method of feeding the animals. (PIA Ifugao) [top]