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Research, Policy and Practice

Table 2 Timeline of drought incidents in the study sites and the impact on livelihoods of the community

From: Participatory analysis of vulnerability to drought in three agro-pastoral communities in the West African Sahel

Site Year Feature Severity Impact on livelihood
Fakara 1954 Very late onset of rainfall Modest Poor crop yield and food shortage
1966 Early cessation of rainfall Severe Loss of crops and famine
1973/1974 Early onset of rainfall and sudden cessation while millets were flowering Severe Sales of livestock at a very low price to buy grains
1984 Insufficient and early cessation of rainfall Severe Total loss of crops, food shortage, sales of livestock to buy grains, and migration
1997 to 1998 Sudden cessation of rainfall when millets were flowering Modest Sales of livestock to buy grains and migration of young men to neighbouring countries
2005 Insufficient rainfall leading to poor crop yield Very severe Sales of livestock at a very low price to buy grains, a bull was sold for as low as 2000 FCFA (about $ 4), massive exploitation of forest resources and massive migration
Gabi 1953 Insufficient rainfall Modest Poor crop yield
1962 Insufficient and sudden cessation of rainfall Severe Widespread famine in the region
1973 to 1974 Insufficient rainfall Modest Migration to neighbouring countries
1984 Insufficient rainfall and early cessation of rainfall Very severe Poor crop yield and death of many animals
1997 Insufficient rainfall and early cessation of rainfall Modest Sales of livestock to buy grains
2005 Insufficient rainfall and early cessation of rainfall Very severe Poor crop yield, malnutrition, and sales of livestock
Zermou 1953 Insufficient rainfall leading to poor crop yield Very severe Sales of livestock at a low price to buy grains
1958 Cessation of rainfall during the flowering of millet Severe Poor crop yield and sales of livestock to buy grains
1973 Sudden cessation of rainfall and insufficient rainfall Very severe Sales of livestock to buy grains
1983 to 1984 Cessation of rainfall during the flowering of millet Very severe Poor crop yield and sales of livestock to buy grains
1986 Insufficient rainfall Severe Sales of livestock to buy grains
1997 Insufficient rainfall Severe Sales of livestock to buy grains
1999 Too much rain at the beginning of the season followed by cessation of rainfall while crops were growing Severe Loss of animals due to feed scarcity and sales of livestock and household properties to buy food
2005 Sudden cessation of rainfall and insufficient rainfall Severe Sales of livestock to buy grains