EFFECT OF PRECIPITATION EFFECTIVENESS INDICES ON THE YIELD OF SOME SELECTED CEREAL CROPS

ABSTRACT

In Nigeria, agriculture is primarily reliant on unpredictable rainfall. Therefore, in order to achieve food sufficiency, it is important to fully understand its pattern and trend. This study looked at how the timing of pentad dry spells—five, ten, and fifteen days—and the length of the rainy season affected the yield of millet, sorghum, rice, and maize in Sokoto State between 1993 and 2008. The chosen precipitation effectiveness indices were derived using Walter’s 1967 method, whereas the dry spell parameters were derived using pentads. The log10 method was used to harmonise crop yield data in (ton/ha) and the chosen precipitation effectiveness indices. Equations based on trendlines and linear trendlines were fitted to show

change. The relationship between crop yield and the chosen precipitation indices was studied using simple correlation. Additionally, regression analysis was used to determine how much the chosen precipitation effectiveness indices affect the crop yield. The results showed that there are significant “noises” and variability in the trend of these precipitation effectiveness indices.

Additionally, the beginning and ending dates of the rainy season are moving backward in time. As a result, the rainy season is lasting longer. Dry spells lasting 5 days or less are typical, while dry spells lasting 10 days or more are less frequent. Due to the early start date of the rains, rice and maize yield are also increasing. The summary of the regression reveals that the chosen precipitation effectiveness indices account for only 52.1%, 50.4%, 52.1%, and 68%, respectively, of the yield variation in maize, millet, rice, and sorghum. Therefore, the study urges the introduction of more crop varieties that can withstand dry spells of five days or more, as well as government assistance to farmers who want to increase the production of rice and maize in the study area.

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION

1.1BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

Climate variability is a significant barrier to agricultural production, particularly in developing nations, and sets a limit to the productive capacity of land resources. However, having sufficient knowledge of climatic factors reduces the impact of climate on food production (Farajzedah et.al., 2012).

It is anticipated that population growth will continue well into the twenty-first century. The main concern is whether and how to increase global food production to meet the needs of the growing population. To meet the demand for food, it will be necessary to increase current levels of food production by a larger amount than the population is expected to increase. Rain that falls on the Earth’s surface is the main source of water for use in agriculture or by humans. Therefore, the

Rainfall serves as the primary source of agricultural production for the majority of the world. Therefore, accurate knowledge of the local rainfall is a crucial requirement for agricultural planning and management. Rainfall is the single most significant Argo-meteorological variable influencing crop production in the tropics, especially for rain-fed agriculture (Ravindran, 2010).

The Onset Date (OD), Cessation Date (CD), Mean Annual Precipitation (MAR), Length of Rainy Season (LRS), Hydrological Ratio (HR), Number of Rainy Days (RD), Rainfall Intensity (RI), Specific Water Consumption (SWC), Rainfall in months of the growing season (May, June, July, August, and September), Seasonality Index (SI), Index of Replicability, and Pentad Dry Spells are the most

 

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