Enhancing Agricultural Yields by Small-holder Farmers through Integrated Climate Change Adaptation in Sierra Leone
Response to climate change impacts in Sierra Leone is too low, despite the emerging evidence in recent years. Climatic variables such as rainfall and temperature which have shown normal routine of occurrence now give a different picture. There has been heavy and short rainfall fluctuation, either early or late- causing farmers to stand in start-of-farming and start-of-seasons dilemmas. Yet little research has been done on the extent of climate change influence on the farming population, and what assistance or indigenous adaptation strategies/technologies they are adopting for self-sustenance and economic growth. This report therefore presents the final findings and views of small-holder farmers on the state of climate change impacts on small-holder agriculture in the country.The findings revealed farmers still uphold to their indigenous farm practices and that certain agricultural products are already disappearing in terms of production. In addition, it was observed that small-holder farmers are already moving from an a priori situation to building a culture on an already observable changed climate. According to the farmers, phenomenal changes in rainfall, and temperature are already taking place in an uneven and erratic manner in the past two to three years. Farmers acknowledged that they have had indigenous meteorological predictions to determine their start-of-farming and start-of-seasons, but these no longer serve them well in recent years. As a result, crop failures, pest and disease proliferation and extreme hunger have been observed.Various recommendations were made to solve the impacting climatic influences on the agricultural production across the agro-climatic regions in Sierra Leone.