Laikipia County: Drought Early Warning Bulletin for August 2015

Situation Report
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Drought Situation & EW Phase Classification

In August, one biophysical indicator was within the expected seasonal range and another was outside the seasonal range. The Vegetation Condition Index is slightly above the normal range, indicating a fair state of pasture and browse condition. Despite this, the pasture and browse condition in pastoral zones and parts of MMF zones is fair to poor according to field observations (explaining the sharp VCI decline from 62.55 to 46.7) while in MF zones and some MMF zones the same is fair to good due to the now ended MAM rains. The state of water sources is normal but declining due to lack of rains and increased competition due influx of from neighbouring counties.

Two production indicators are still below the normal range for the period. Livestock migration patterns are not normal for the time of the year. Milk production per household is below the normal range and livestock deaths due to diseases were reported. The body condition of animals is generally within the normal range for the period but the situation is slightly below normal in the pastoral LZ.
This is due to factors such as overgrazing and overstocking. The situation may degenerate as the impact of the influx of livestock from neighbouring counties is already being felt.

As for access, milk consumption is below the normal range. The terms of trade (ToT) are within the normal range and are slightly shifting in favour of cereal farmers. Utilization indicators are within the normal range. However, MUAC levels in Magadi – Olmoran (MMF) sentinel are outside the normal range.

Since one physical indicator, two production indicators and one access indicator are below the normal range, the EW phase is on Alert but deteriorating across the whole County.

The drought risk is still low due to the positive effect of the now ended MAM rains. In view of the current situation, it is important to embark on drought preparedness activities across the entire County