Seasonal Monitor

Average to above average cumulative seasonal rainfall despite localized early-season deficits

October 2018

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Would likely be at least one phase worse without current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

IPC 2.0 Acute Food Insecurity Phase

Presence countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3: Crisis
4: Emergency
5: Famine
Remote monitoring
countries:
1: Minimal
2: Stressed
3+: Crisis or higher
Would likely be at least one phase worse without
current or programmed humanitarian assistance
Concentration of displaced people – hover over maps to view food security phase classifications for camps in Nigeria.
FEWS NET classification is IPC-compatible. IPC-compatible analysis follows key IPC protocols but does not necessarily reflect the consensus of national food security partners.
FEWS NET Remote Monitoring countries use a colored outline to represent the highest IPC classification in areas of concern.

Key Messages

  • The 2018 growing season in West Africa has been characterized by globally average to above average rainfall (Figure 1). However, some areas were affected by below average rainfall with pockets of severe and prolonged dryness in northwestern Senegal and southwestern Mauritania (Figure 2).

  • The severe rainfall deficit and very long dry spells that northern Senegal and southwestern Mauritania experienced from early to mid-season are likely to have a serious impact on crop and range performance (Figure 3 and Figure 4).

  • The ITF continues its southward retreat (Figure 5). Its location at the first dekad of October indicates a timely end of the growing season in the northern part of the Sahelian zone.

  • The medium-term forecast for the next two weeks (October 22nd – October 29th) calls for light to moderate rainfall over the Gulf of Guinea countries while the rest of the region will be dry.

UPDATE ON SEASONAL PROGRESS

  •  The Intertropical Front (ITF) continues its southward retreat, leaving the northern half of the Sahelian zone to the dry season.  It is currently at its climatological position in Mali, Mauritania and Senegal, and slightly north of it in Niger and Chad (Figure 5).
  • Both the major and minor seasons in the bi-modal zone have been very good and an average to above average harvest is expected.  Based on the medium-term forecast, moderate to heavy rainfall is expected through the rest of October which will be very beneficial to crops for the remaining part of the minor season.
  • For the rest of the Sudanian-Guinean zone, outside of the bi-modal zone, rainfall during the growing season has also been generally good.  Despite the rainfall deficits experienced early in the season in June-July in western Liberia, Sierra Leone and southwestern Guinea the season outcome is expected to be at least average based on the good agro-climatological conditions that have prevailed from the end of dryness to present.
  • Most of the Sahelian zone received adequate and well distributed rainfall throughout the season. Most of the areas affected by the June-July rainfall deficits and bad time distribution of rainfall, such as western Niger and eastern Burkina Faso, experienced significant improvement in agrometeorological conditions following the mostly average to above average rainfall received in the second dekad of July.  Consequently, a close to average harvest is expected.
    • For southwestern Mauritania and northwestern Senegal, the July relief was short-lived.  The area continued to suffer from dry conditions that persisted until mid-August (Figure 2), but conditions significantly improved afterward.

FORECASTS

  • The short and medium-term NOAA/CPC forecasts call for moderate to heavy rains over the Gulf of Guinea countries.
  • The November seasonal forecast from NOAA-NCEP calls for a slight increase in likelihood of above average rainfall over southern Nigeria, southwestern Ghana, most of Cote d’Ivoire, and the southeastern tip of Guinea.

About this Report

The seasonal monitor, produced by the FEWS NET USGS regional scientist and FEWS NET Regional Technical Manager, updates rainfall totals, the impact on production, and the short-term forecast. It is produced every 20 days during the production season. Find more remote sensing information here.

 

About FEWS NET

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on some 34 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, and USGS, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica. Read more about our work.

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