Drought causes P16M damage to livestock

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD CITY – The worsening dry spell has inflicted P16 million in damage to livestock and pasture in Negros Occidental.

Provincial Veterinarian Placeda Lemana reported to Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson that El Niño has impacted 1,139 households in 115 barangays across 24 local government units (LGUs).

A report furnished to reporters Thursday stated that livestock damage alone amounted to P13,784,650, while pasture damage reached P2,785,650, totaling P16,470,150.

The report detailed that 14,598 heads of various livestock died as follows: carabao (44), cattle (24), goat/sheep (278), swine (583), rabbit (5), and poultry (13,664).

Earlier, the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist reported that drought-related damage to agricultural crops in Negros Occidental increased to P302,224,913.

The OPA report showed that rice crops suffered the most, with estimated damage at P291,747,976.57, corn at P7,809,894.76, and fisheries at P2,667,042.

Dina Genzola, OIC provincial agriculturist, reported to Governor Lacson that the drought affected 5,864 hectares of rice lands in 216 barangays across 28 of the 31 LGUs in Negros Occidental, impacting 8,285 farmers.

As a result, at least three local government units, including the cities of San Carlos, Kabankalan, and the municipality of San Enrique, have declared their areas under a state of calamity. This declaration enables them to use calamity funds to assist affected farmers.

The drought also damaged 178.91 hectares of corn land in 40 barangays across 12 LGUs, affecting 265 farmers in the province.

Kabankalan City is the hardest-hit locality, with damage amounting to P99,624,716.80 to its rice lands. This impact affected 20 barangays and 3,430 farmers tilling 2,355.11 hectares of rice lands.

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