Legazpi, ALBAY — It’s not a month yet since Mt. Mayon began to erupt, but its damages to agriculture in the province of Albay has already reached P185 million.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) said that the activities of the volcano affect more than 9,000 farmers in the over 7,000 hectares of land in the province.
The crops produced by local farmers can no longer be consumed as these are damaged already by the ashfall.
The badly hit are farmlands. Next are vegetables, and farm animals like cows and water buffalos.
The DA fears more farmers will be affected if the volcano continues to erupt.
The farmers in the second and third district of Albay are the most affected.
Due to the ashfall, prices of vegetables rose particularly in local markets in the town of Legazpi.
The DA, meanwhile said that it is already monitoring those who would take unfair advantage of the situation by selling vegetables at higher prices.
The Provincial Veterinary Service (PVS) began conducting deworming and administration of vitamins to the animals of farmers.
Overall, almost 700 water buffalos and cows have been affected by the eruption of Mayon Volcano.
“Ito po yung aming evacuation. Nag-se-set up kami ng isang lugar kung saan iipunin lang nila yung mga hayop nila,” said PVS Project Leader Animal Health Division Dr. Manny Victorino.
(This is our evacuation. We set up an area where they can place their animals.”)
The cows and carabaos are the primary helpers of farmers in their livelihood. This is why the Provincial Veterinary Service wants to assure that they are healthy.
According to some farmers, the health of their animals has been affected by the ashfall coming from Mt. Mayon.
“Kasi yung abo walang makakin yung kalabaw siempre yung mga abo sa damo,” said Nestor Otilla, a local farmer.
(Our water buffalos have nothing to eat since the grass have been covered by ash.)
“Minsan nagtae sila, Sir. Malaking bagay sa amin na may nag inject baga vitamins,” said Frankie Novie, also a farmer.
(They had diarrhea once. It’s a big help that they are receiving vitamin injection.)
Through the PVS, farms animals might avoid contracting diseases, and farmers can recover from the losses they suffer due to the eruption of the Mayon Volcano. — Mon Jocson | UNTV News & Rescue