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Farmers’ perceptions of drought and adaptation strategies in Mashi Local Government Area, Katsina State, Nigeria

I.B. Abaje
J. Magaji


In spite of drought’s long history in northern Nigeria and approaches to drought mitigation, losses from it have continued to rise. This study assessed farmers’ perceptions of drought and adaptation strategies employed in combating the impacts of drought in Mashi Local Government Area of Katsina State. Rainfall data spanning a period of 60 years (1961-2020) was used in the study. A total of 384 copies of a questionnaire were administered to farmers in selected communities of the study area. A second order polynomial curve fitting, 5-year moving average, and standard deviation were used in determining trends and variability of the rainfall while Rainfall Anomaly Index was used in depicting periods of different drought intensities in the area. A five-point Likert Scale was then used to assess the impact of drought on agriculture and drought adaptation strategies. The results from the second order polynomial curve fitting, the 5-year moving average and the standard deviation indicated an increasing rainfall trend in recent years. The Rainfall Anomaly Index revealed that the area has experienced different droughts intensities in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s while normal to very wet conditions dominated in the 2000s and 2010s. Findings also revealed that the most significant impacts of drought were decline in crop yields with a mean score ( ) of 4.06 an increase in the cost of food crops ( = 4.04) among others. Further findings revealed that praying for God to intervene ( = 4.46) and planting crops with early maturity ( = 4.33) among others were the most significant drought adaptation strategies. Conclusively, this study revealed that the area has been experiencing a decreasing number of droughts in recent years. It is recommended that extension workers should be trained in climate change science to enable them to pass adequate information on climate related issues and appropriate drought adaptation measures to farmers, and strategies for combating droughts should consider the traditional and religious beliefs of the people.

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print ISSN: 2006-7003