MORE than P12 million worth of livestock and poultry were damaged in the 10 municipalities due to the mild El Niño that hit the Province.

This, as the weather bureau announced the start of the rainy season.

Engr. Oscar Tabada, chief of Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pag-asa) in Mactan, said rainfall for this month is normal, but the rainy season will not stay long.

Tabada said rain will be below normal by July and the rest of the months, which means the volume of rainwater will not reach its expected level.

Motaas ang temperature pero di grabe ang kainit (Temperature will rise but not as hot as during summer),” he said.

The Provincial Veterinary Office reported that a total of 193 cattle, 128 carabaos, 457 goat, 525 swine and 3,054 chickens were affected in 10 local government units.

Towns

These include the towns of Alegria, Ronda, Madridejos, Santa Fe, Tabuelan, Compostela, San Francisco, Pilar, Consolacion and Cordova.

Earlier, Tabada said the mild El Niño will be experienced until the end of the year and may extend until the first quarter of 2016.

Provincial Veterinarian Mary Rose Vincoy said some of the animals died due to heat stroke while others suffered nutritional deficiency that resulted in stress from too much heat.

Alegria got the biggest damage at P7.3 million.

At least 120 cattle, 44 carabaos, 238 goats, 379 swines and 2,142 chickens were affected by the mild El Niño in the town.

Farmers and farm owners in Santa Fe in Bantayan Island lost about P2.9 million worth of cattle, goat, pigs and chickens.

In San Francisco, Camotes Island, 20 cattle and 15 carabaos, amounting to P1.2 million, died from too much heat.

Vincoy said farm animals that experienced stress and those that no longer gained weight due to the dry spell were slaughtered. Their meat was sold so farmers would still earn.

“Instead nga dako unta ilang makwarta, gamay na lang kay dili na paabuton nga moniwang na og maayo or magkasakit na, mao nang isakripisyo (They didn’t wait for the animals to get sick or lose weight),” she said.

For instance, if chickens feel heat stress, they will not gain weight anymore or lay eggs.

Vincoy advised farmers and farm owners to always provide water to animals and keep them cool or bathe them, especially the pigs.

It is also ideal to place cattle and carabaos in a shady area, such as under the trees.

Vincoy said it is also good to add salt, sugar or multivitamins to the water that the animals drink to help them survive the heat.