J. Assessment Checklists

9. Agriculture and Livestock

Refer to chapter III, Agriculture and Livestock section, for back-ground information.

a. Baseline Data

  • Describe crops grown in the affected area:
    • Crop name.
    • Average area planted (per data available).
    • Average production (per data available).
    • Planting season(s) (dates) and time to maturity.
    • Are crops climate specific? If so, identify the climatic requirements.
    • Are hybrid seeds being used in the area? If so, identify them.
    • Are they cash or subsistence crops?
  • Describe domestic animals present in each affected area:
    • Approximate number of animals in the area.
    • Value of individual animals.
    • Use of animals for food.
    • Use of animals for work.
    • Use of animals for cash production.
    • Are bred stocks used in the area?
  • Describe the agricultural system:
    • Main agriculturist in family units (male/female).
    • Land-use systems.
    • Agricultural labor system/land tenure.
    • Crop preferences.
    • Inputs.
    • Seeds (reserved or purchases). Is treated seed used?
    • Fertilizer.
    • Machinery/tools.
    • Pesticides.
    • Storage (farm, government, private).
    • Agribusiness facilities; processing of local or imported commodities.
  • Describe the local fishing industry.

b. Effect of the Event on Agriculture

  • Ascertain the extent of damage to crop/fisheries by area, noting at what point in the production cycle the event occurred. State the source of the information.
  • Estimate the loss in production (tonnage/head) by crop/fisheries and by zone within the affected area. Is the output expected sufficient to cover consumption needs of the community (or household)? If not, how do families plan to meet those needs?
  • Analyze whether losses will increase over time and state why or why not.
  • Describe the damage to agricultural machinery.
  • Describe the damage to irrigation systems.
  • Describe the damage to seed, fertilizer, and pesticide stocks.
  • Describe the damage to fishing ponds, farms, and gear.
  • For a drought, compare the current rainfall to the normal or recent past precipitation.
  • Identify any unusual or untimely grazing changes.
  • Describe any threats from insects or disease that might follow the disaster.
  • Describe the current terms of trade for rural farmers and livestock owners based on market information from rural areas (not major cities).
  • Compare prices, availability, and quality of staple grains on rural markets with those of the last good year, as well as over the past several months. Indicate where the grain comes from (e.g., locally produced, imported from other regions or countries). Note availability of other commodities (e.g., vegetables, spices, oil).
  • Compare prices and condition of livestock on markets with those of the last good year, as well as over the past several months. How far are livestock owners traveling to sell their animals? Are buyers actively purchasing animals? Are signs of distress sales of animals evident? Talk with the sellers to determine why they are selling their animals, and look for camels, cows, and young calves on the market.
  • Analyze farmers’ access to fields for planting, weeding, and harvesting (particularly in refugee situations). Is access assured during the entire agricultural cycle or will conflict or migration prevent harvest?
  • Describe how fields are normally prepared for planting, and estimate community capacity to prepare land this year (labor, animal traction, etc.).
  • Identify start of next major planting season, what crops are commonly planted, and when seeds of these crops must be in farmers’ hands to ensure that fields will be planted on time. Identify seed varieties that are suitable to the agro-ecological area and are known to farmers.
  • Analyze seed availability and access by rural farmers. If sufficient quantities or appropriate varieties are not available, describe the specific causes of shortage.
  • Estimate how much land was planted in the affected area during the most recent growing season, and compare this amount to average. Describe where farmers obtained seed for the previous season (if situation is ongoing and not a sudden disaster) and likelihood that farmers will be able to access the same source this season.
  • Describe the availability of farming tools for individual households, and explain what hand tools could enhance productivity. Note local or regional sources of tools and whether tools were distributed for the previous season’s planting.
  • Examine other constraints (e.g., seed storage, soil fertility, water availability) that merit attention, and discuss how they can be addressed.

c. Effect of the Event on Livestock

  • Identify the primary livestock holdings in the area (e.g., camels, sheep, cattle, goats). Describe the local uses of livestock, the economic and cultural implications of these roles, and the extent to which livestock contribute to household food intake at different times of the year.
  • Discuss the levels of livestock losses that are acceptable while still maintaining viable herds or flocks. Is increasing animal mortality evident? List the primary factors leading to animal deaths.
  • Describe the level of market access held by livestock owners and the ability of these owners to offtake animals from herds in difficult times.
  • Determine feed availability for animals, and the condition of pasture and water resources at home and along migration routes. Have migration routes changed significantly this year?
  • Discuss relevant laws related to livestock slaughter or transport.
  • Ascertain the estimated duration and severity of the emergency, as well as the potential livestock losses. What is the estimated length of time needed to rebuild the pastoral economy?
  • Describe the regional and local animal healthcare systems, and determine what needs are met by these systems.

d. Agricultural Production Capabilities

  • Ascertain availability of inputs by type (e.g., seed, fertilizer, pesticides, tools, machinery, veterinary medicines, fishing boats, nets, breeding stock).
  • Estimate the local government stocks on hand and when they are scheduled to arrive.
  • Estimate the local commercial stocks on hand and when they are scheduled to arrive.
  • Estimate the local personal stocks on hand and when they are scheduled to arrive.
  • Ask the victims how they plan to cope with losses.
  • Determine regional availabilities and elasticity of supplies.
  • Ascertain what other donors plan to supply.
  • Outline what further inputs would be required to restore minimum productivity.
  • Find out if repackaging facilities for seed, fertilizer, and pesticides exist.
  • Identify distribution systems/technical infrastructure.
  • Outline host government (Ministry of Agriculture) operations in the affected area. Does it provide:
    • Extension service?
    • Crop storage/silos?
    • Veterinary services?
    • Irrigation services?
    • Research facilities?
    • Hybrid seed?
    • Fertilizer?
    • Other plants (fruit trees)?
    • Pesticides?

e. Other

  • Describe any agricultural projects and inputs provided by foreign organizations or governments.
  • Describe the operations of rural or agricultural credit organizations, cooperatives, or credit-sharing organizations present in the affected area.
  • Judge the capacity of the above to incorporate rehabilitation disaster assistance.

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Last updated: May 18, 2017