Water sources for smallholder farmers


Photo credit: CIAT

CIAT and The Zamorano Pan-American Agricultural School, in coordination with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)/Honduras, began in March the validation and dissemination process of the geographic information system (GIS) tool AGRI (Water for Irrigation, by its Spanish acronym).

Visualización de resultados de AGRI con agricultores de Yamaranguila (Intibucá)


Identifying water sources for smallholder farmers with AGRI



From the office to the field: AGRI ‒ a tool with great potential

The first validations were made in March, the driest month in Honduras and after El Niño, and the tool identified water sources in rivers and streams with enough water flow and from where it is easy to conduct water by gravity to the irrigation systems.


In the case of irrigation systems in operation, the tool identified actual water sources in a few seconds, whereas technicians looked for months for a source and the correct position from where to conduct the water successfully. Additionally, agronomists have highlighted the usefulness of the tool to guide pipe installation, a task that consumes a lot of time and resources in these system implementations.

In the case of water harvest, the tool has identified suitable sites for implementation. At the identified sites, their habitants have confirmed the water accumulation during the rainy season. In some cases, the places identified have evidence of water accumulation and small reservoirs now, in the dry season. Zamorano University currently continues the field validation and the results from this activity will be included in the final version of AGRI.

Read the full story: CIAT


Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.