Monday, May 19, 2008

Costa Rica's north hit hard by drought

Policemen Hugo Sequeiro and Juan Francisco Canales stand close to the corpse of a dead cow in Los Chiles, Alajuela. (Photo: Carlos Hernandez / La Nacion)San Jose, Costa Rica - The death of 200 heads of cattle in Los Chiles, Alajuela, in the northern part of the country, is added to other losses in Costa Rica due to drought, the Ministry of Agriculture and Stockbreeding (MAG) confirmed Monday.

According to MAG Vice Minister Carlos Villalobos, the number might increase because counting began on Saturday. The unofficial number of the four northern places (San Carlos, Upala, Los Chiles and Guatuso) amounts to 250 dead animals.

Villalobos indicated that due to water shortage cows, calves and bulls have died. The population of the region is also suffering the impact of the drought although measures are being taken.

At the beginning of this month, MAG authorities reported that Costa Rica has lost 17 percent of its beans harvest due to the prolonged drought.

Villalobos affirmed that the problem is very serious and alerted that it will continue to grow if it does not rain.

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