Breaking

Dry Spell Forces Mbarara Farmers to Sell off Cattle Cheaply

Anna Mugisha, a dairy farmer says she forks out shillings 250.000 for each trip of water delivered to her farm.
Pastoralists in Kashari County in Mbarara district are selling off their animals cheaply as a result of the prolonged dry spell.  The most affected area is Rubaya Sub County, which is home to hundreds of cattle farmers.

Godfrey Katebarirwe, a farmer in Rubaya Sub County says farmers who didn\'t store water and pasture are finding it very hard to water and feed their animals. He says those who can afford are hiring trucks at very exorbitant rates to fetch water from River Rwizi in Mbarara town to refill their valley dams.

Anna Mugisha, a dairy farmer says she forks out shillings 250.000 for each trip of water delivered to her farm. As a result, Mugisha says she has decided to sell off half of her exotic cows to avoid making 100 percent loss because of the long effects of drought. A mature cow is now going for between shs.800.000-1.2 million from shillings 2.5 million.

According to Mugisha, they have no choice but sell off the animals cheaply instead of waiting for the dry spell to wipe out their kraals. Major Sam Murali, the coordination National Agriculture Advisory Services blames the dry spell on effects on climate change resulting from bush burning and indiscriminate tree cutting, which he says affects the rainfall pattern.

Murali calls upon Government to mobilize farmers to help each other to dig deep valley dams to reserve water for animals and domestic use. He also wants the local authorities to repair all bore holes and community dams in the district to address the water crisis.

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