In most parts of Somalia, Jilaal (January–March) season dry weather conditions persisted in February 2018, characterized by mostly dry winds and elevated temperatures. Few stations such as Qulenjeed (Awdal), Daraweyn (W. Galbeed) and Beletweyn (Hiran) recorded some rainfall (Map 1 and table 1). According to FSNAU field reports, there has been little rainfall in parts of Togwajaale, Gabiley and Lughaya in northwest, Bakool (Hudur, Wajid and Elbarde) and M. Shabelle (Adenyabal,
Cadale, Mahaday). Shebelle river level is very low and it has nearly dried up around Sablale, in the lower catchments of the river, leaving brackish water which is not suitable for human and animal use.
Satellite derived rainfall estimates (RFE) confirms prevalence of dry weather conditions across the country during the month of February (Map 2-5). According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS) land surface temperatures (LST) for February remained elevated in West Golis, Northern Inland Pastoral (NIP) and in parts of Addun,
Hiran agropastoral, Cowpea belt, Southern rainfed maize and Juba pastoral livelihood zones.
Vegetation cover measured through the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) for February indicates continued deterioration of pasture and vegetation conditions especially in parts of Guban,
Golis of Sanaag, Allula District in Bari region in northern parts of the country. In southern Somalia, Middle and Lower Shabelle, Bay, Bakool, Gedo, Middle Juba and Lower Juba show small to large decreases in vegetation cover compared to average. Large decrease of vegetation is evident in parts in Cowpea Belt, Southern Rained, and Juba Pastoral livelihoods (Map 10).
Consistent with seasonal trends, during the current Jilaal dry season, poor pasture and inadequate water availability has been reported in most parts of the country due to prevailing dry weather conditions and high evaporation rates. Increased water prices from permanent water sources have been reported in Addun, Coastal Deeh, NIP and Hiran Agropastoral livelihood zones.
Opportunistic livestock migration towards more favorable permanent water sources is evident across the country.
Further deterioration in pasture and water conditions, consequent increase in water prices, increased livestock migration and continued reduction in Shablle river levels are expected until the start of Gu (AprilJune) rains in April, especially in areas that have been highlighted above. These adverse impacts are expected to be more pronounced in areas that have experienced poor 2017 Deyr (October-December) season rainfall.