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Gu rains fully established in late April in many parts of the country

  • Seasonal Monitor
  • Somalia
  • May 4, 2016
Gu rains fully established in late April in many parts of the country

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    Moderate to light rains ranging from 25 to 150 millimeters (mm), with normal spatial and temporal distribution, were received in many parts of the country, including large areas of the Northwest and South, as well as pockets of central Somalia (Figure 1). The rainfall estimate (RFE2) for April 21 to 30 was approximately 10 to 100 mm above the 2001-to-2014 short-term average in most areas. However, contrary to the satellite imagery, vast areas of the Northeast and parts of central regions received well below-average rainfall (Figure 2). 


    In the Northwest, well-distributed, average to above-average rains were reported in most livelihood zones. This included all pastoral and agropastoral areas in Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed, and Togdheer Regions, and East Golis in Elafweyn District of Sanaag Region. Atypical heavy rains also fell in Guban Pastoral livelihood zone in Awdal and Woqooyi Galbeed, which normally does not receive Gu rains. Most areas of Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone in Sool, Sanaag, and East Golis of Erigabo received localized and light rainfall during the reporting period. Gabiley and Borama rain gauges recorded 42 mm and 33 mm of rainfall, respectively. Overall, crop development and rangeland conditions are favorable in areas that received good rainfall.

    In the Northeast, rainfall performance was relatively poor in most livelihood zones. Moderate rains fell in most parts of Hawd livelihood zone in Nugaal and North Mudug and in localized areas of Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone in Qardho, Bossaso, and Bandarbeyla Districts. Light rainfall was reported in Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone of Nugaal and North Mudug. Localized and light showers were received in most parts of Addun Pastoral livelihood of Nugaal and North Mudug, East Golis of Qandala, and Bossaso and Alula Districts. However, rainfall was not received in pastoral livelihood zones of Iskushuban District or in coastal areas during the reporting period.

    In central regions, rainfall performance varied across livelihood zones. Moderate to heavy rains fell in Hawd pastoral livelihood zone, coastal areas of Harardhere, and localized areas of Elder. However, most parts of Hobyo District and parts of Elder, particularly Cowpea-belt agropastoral livelihood zones and most of Addun Pastoral livelihood zone received only light rainfall. Rain gauge data in Harardhere recorded rainfall amounts of 14 mm.

    In the South, well-distributed average to above-average rains were reported in most areas. Moderate to heavy rains fell in parts of Southern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone, Wanlaweyn Agropastoral areas, Afgoye Riverine areas of Lower Shabelle, agropastoral and riverine areas of Jowhar and Balcad of Middle Shabelle, all districts of Middle and Lower Juba, and most parts of Gedo, Bay, and Bakool. However, Southern Inland Pastoral and Hawd Pastoral livelihood zones of Hiraan, Adale, and Adan Yabaal of Middle Shabelle received only light to moderate rains. During the reporting period, rain gauge data recorded 175 mm in Baidoa/Berdale and 229.5 mm in Qansahdhere of Bay. Approximately 155 mm fell in Hudur of Bakool, 75 mm in Jowhar of Middle Juba, 94 mm in Afgoye of Lower Shabelle, 51 mm in Sakow of Middle Juba, and 29 mm in Jamame of Lower Juba. Additionally, as a result of increased precipitation in the Ethiopian highlands, both the Shabelle and Juba River levels have increased to well above-average. Given the forecast for heavy rains in both Somalia and the Ethiopian highlands in the coming week, the risk of flooding is high for riverine communities. River breakages have already been reported in Bardhere and Bulo Ahmed Ciyow of Jowhar District, flooding croplands in these villages. This was also observed in riverine districts of Luuq and Burdhubo (Garboharey) of Gedo Region.

    The satellite-derived eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) showed average to slightly above-average conditions in parts of central and northern Somalia, but largely below-average conditions in the southern and some central regions (Figure 3). The below average vegetation conditions in these regions are attributed to delayed Gu rainfall, but NDVI is expected to increase in early May given favorable rainfall in late April. The seven-day rainfall forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association’s Climate Prediction Center (NOAA/CPC) indicates that rainfall up to 125 mm is likely through May 10 in many northern and central regions, as well as in some southern regions. Rainfall up to 30 mm is likely in most southern regions and parts of central regions (Figure 4).

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    About this Report

    FEWS NET publishes a Seasonal Monitor for Somalia every 10 days (dekad) through the end of the current April to June Gu rainy season. The purpose of this document is to provide updated information on the progress of the Gu season to facilitate contingency and response planning. This Somalia Seasonal Monitor is valid through May 10, 2016 and is produced in collaboration with U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit (FSNAU) Somalia, the Somali Water and Land Information System (SWALIM), a number of other agencies, and several Somali non-governmental organizations (NGOs).


    Figure 1


    Source: FEWS NET

    Figure 2

    Estimated rainfall (RFE2) in millimeters (mm), April 21 to 30, 2016

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 3

    Rainfall anomaly (RFE2) in millimeters (mm) from 2001-to-2014 mean, April 21 to 30, 2016

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 4

    eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) anomaly from 2001-to- 2010 mean, April 21 to 30, 2016

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 5

    Global Forecast System (GFS) rainfall forecast in millimeters (mm) for May 3 to May 10, 2016

    Source: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)/Climate Prediction Cente…

    FEWS NET’s Seasonal Monitor reports are produced for Central America and the Caribbean, West Africa, East Africa, Central Asia, and Somalia every 10-to-30 days during the region’s respective rainy season(s). Seasonal Monitors report updates on weather events (e.g., rainfall patterns) and associated impacts on ground conditions (e.g., cropping conditions, pasture and water availability), as well as the short-term rainfall forecast. Find more remote sensing information here.

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