• Saturday, April 20, 2024
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NiMet advises Nigerian Farmers to prepare for diverse weather conditions

FG commits to empowering farmers to boost food security

Nigerian farmers, comprising crop, livestock and aquaculture sectors, are being advised by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) to prepare for variations in rainfall patterns and temperatures nationwide through issued forecasts.

NiMet’s 2024 seasonal climate prediction highlights the need for farmers to adopt specific strategies to ensure a successful harvest this year.

Read also: MTN partners NiMet on weather information dissemination to farmers

Farmers in areas expecting a shorter growing season are encouraged to plant early and choose early-maturing crop varieties.

In the north, NiMet recommends drought-tolerant and early-maturing varieties, while delaying planting is advised in regions expecting an early dry spell.

For regions predicted to experience moderate to severe dry spells, NiMet advises utilizing drought-tolerant crop varieties.

Farmers should also adopt water conservation techniques like mulching, water harvesting, and strategic fertilizer application to prevent nutrient leaching.

Coastal and wetland farmers are urged to diversify their income sources, such as exploring livestock rearing or aquaculture, to mitigate potential losses from flooding.

Farmers in the central region should diversify their crops and ensure timely procurement of agricultural inputs before the planting season.

Strategic irrigation, focusing on mornings and evenings, is recommended for crop farmers.

To safeguard poultry health during the anticipated hot period between February and May, NiMet advises farmers to reduce bird density within enclosures and ensure proper ventilation.

Routine deworming is essential for ruminant livestock, and antibiotics can help prevent udder mastitis in milking cows.

Pig farmers need to be particularly vigilant against African swine fever throughout the year and implement strict biosecurity measures to protect their herds.

In areas with anticipated warmer temperatures, fish farmers should minimize feeding their stock and dredge ponds to increase water capacity. Consistent cleaning of fishponds is crucial during hot periods.

NiMet strongly encourages farmers to consult with relevant agencies like NiMet itself and National Agricultural Research Institutes (NARIs) at the state level.

Read also: NiMet’s university network programme aims to promote early weather, climate warnings to farmers Anosike

These consultations will allow farmers to obtain personalized guidance tailored to their specific locations and agricultural practices.

The agency further advises against planting before the predicted onset of rains and suggests reviving traditional bimodal farming practices in areas most affected by weather variations.

By adopting these region-specific strategies and seeking expert advice, Nigerian farmers can navigate the upcoming season’s diverse weather conditions and ensure a successful harvest.