Dry spell also brings rats in North Cotabato
As if shrivelled crops are not enough, residents of North Cotabato also have to deal with rat infestation which is also triggered by the dry spell being experienced by the province.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported that rats have destroyed P84.5 million worth of crops in the province, on top of a P989-million loss due to El Nino.
North Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza said the provincial government has distributed rat poison to communities attacked by rodents.
The rat infestation in North Cotabato is not the only weird animal behavior reported during the dry spell.
In Dipolog City, thousands of tamban fish reportedly swam to shore to escape the warming deeper sea waters. In Kidapawan City, cobras came out of their dried up holes to seek the cooler temperatures of villages near rubber plantations.
The provincial government of North Cotabato estimated that at least 50,000 hectares of rice and corn farms and more than 25,000 farmers have been affected by the dry spell. Banana plantations and other crops were also not spared.
Mendoza was quoted by the Inquirer as saying that the provincial government is distributing animals and seeds, and that cloud seeding operations have not been successful.