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Continued moderate to significant rains in South-Central Somalia

  • Seasonal Monitor
  • Somalia
  • November 3, 2015
Continued moderate to significant rains in South-Central Somalia

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    Both satellite images and ground reports show that moderate to significant amounts of rain, ranging from 50 to 150 millimeters (mm) were received in many southern and central regions from October 21 to 31. However, contrary to forecasts, most parts of the North were dry. Also, parts of Lower and Middle Juba and Gedo Region were dry or only had light showers (Figure 1). The rainfall estimate (RFE2) for October 20 to 31 shows that the rainfall was 25 to 50 mm below the 2005 to 2009 average in the northern regions, Gedo, and the Jubas (Figure 2).


    In the Northwest, moderate rains of up to 50 mm fell in most of Hawd Pastoral livelihood zone and parts of Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone in Sool and Sanaag Regions. Also, localized light to moderate rains were received in agropastoral areas in Odweyne District and most parts of West Golis Pastoral livelihood zone. Field reports indicate that livestock have been abnormally out-migration from many of the drier districts of Sanaag, Bari, Nugaal, and Sool Regions. Guban Pastoral livelihood zone remained dry. In general, most water catchments have not been refilled and pasture conditions have yet to improve.

    In the Northeast, widespread moderate rains were received in the Hawd and in Addun Pastoral livelihood zone in Nugaal and northern Mudug. Localized, scattered, light showers were reported in most districts of Bari Region, including in Bosasso, Qandala, Caluula, Qardho, and Bandar Beyla. The rains have continued to be too light to regenerate pasture or to significantly increase water availability. From Bari Region, livestock continue to be abnormally migrated towards and to Sool Region.

    In the central regions and Hiiraan, well distributed, moderate to heavy precipitation continued, including in the Hawd, the cowpea belt, Addun Pastoral livelihood zone, and Coastal Deeh Pastoral livelihood zone. Both the earlier rains and recent rains have increased both pasture and water availability. They have allowed further cowpea development. In Hiiraan, widely distributed, moderate to heavy rains fell in most of the Hawd, Southern Inland Pastoral livelihood zone, riverine areas, and agropastoral areas. The rains have fully refilled many natural water catchments and artificial berkads, increasing water access in pastoral areas. The rains have also led to germination or crop establishment in agropastoral and riverine areas.

    In the South, rainfall performance varied. Moderate to heavy rains with typical to better-than-typical spatial and temporal distribution fell in most of Bay, Bakool, Gedo, Hiiraan, and the Shabelle Regions. Rain gauges confirmed the high amounts of rainfall estimated by satellites. In Bakool, rain gauges recorded 60 to 152 mm, in Hiiraan 58 to 167 mm, in Bay 47 to 155 mm, and in Lower Shabelle 25 to 56 mm. With the rains, crop germination continued, and seedlings became established. Pasture regenerated, and water points were refilled. However, little or no rain was recorded from October 21 to 31 in both Lower and Middle Juba Regions. Water and pasture conditions remain typical in these regions, but standing crops in agropastoral areas are starting to show signs of moisture stress. The Shabelle River flooded in Beledweyne District of Hiiraan, but there was minimal damage. The Juba River flooded near Kamsuma village in Jamaame District in Lower Juba. This flood displaced a significant proportion of the village’s residents and inundated arable land. In Bay Region, there were flash floods in lowland villages in Diinsoor, Buur Hakaba, and Baydhabo Districts. In Bakool, there were flash floods in Xudur and Ceel Barde Districts that damaged underground food storage and led to some temporary displacement.

    The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) satellite vegetation measurement indicates that during the rains, vegetation has continued to grow in South-Central Somalia. Similarly, vegetation grew in some parts of East Golis Pastoral, Hawd Pastoral, and Northern Inland Pastoral livelihood zones in late October. However, vegetation conditions are below the 2001 to 2010 average in most of Awdal, Bari, Lower Juba, Lower Shabelle, Sanaag, and Woqooyi Galbeed Regions reflecting the weak intensity of the rains and low cumulative rainfall in these areas (Figure 3). The seven‐day weather forecast for November 4 to 10 indicates moderate rains of more than 30 mm in most parts of the Northwest and some parts of Northeast, the central regions, and the southwestern regions. These could improve the availability of vegetation and water, especially in the North. However, dry conditions are forecast to continue in coastal areas in the North and the South and some parts of Lower Juba (Figure 4).

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    Figures Seasonal calendar in a typical year

    Figure 1

    Seasonal calendar in a typical year

    Source: FEWS NET

    Figure 1. Estimated rainfall (RFE2) in millimeters (mm), October 21-31, 2015

    Figure 2

    Figure 1. Estimated rainfall (RFE2) in millimeters (mm), October 21-31, 2015

    Source: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)/FEWS NET

    Figure 2: October 21-31, 2015 rainfall anomaly (RFE2) in mm from 005-2009 mean

    Figure 3

    Figure 2: October 21-31, 2015 rainfall anomaly (RFE2) in mm from 2005-2009 mean

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 3. eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) anomaly from 2001-2010 mean, October 21-31, 2015

    Figure 4

    Figure 3. eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) anomaly from 2001-2010 mean, October 21-31, 2015

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 4. Global Forecast System (GFS) rainfall forecast in mm for November 4-10, 2015

    Figure 5

    Figure 4. Global Forecast System (GFS) rainfall forecast in mm for November 4-10, 2015

    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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