Patagonia – Record snowfall – Sheep and cows buried alive

Historic snowfall could destroy sheep farming in the area for years.
Five feet (1½ m) of snow and temperatures around 20 degrees below zero.
Can you imagine even trying to walk through snow up to your chin?

This climate combo, which has been taking place for 20 days in the region, left livestock farming in a critical state and led to the Rio Negro government this week declaring a state of Emergency and / or Agricultural Disaster in 6 departments of the western province.

In the departments of Bariloche, El Cuy, Ñorquinco and Pilcaniyeu were hit by “extraordinary snowfall” that “have caused damage” in rural livestock farms in the area, leading to a crisis for many sheep farmers and other productions in Patagonia and the south of the country.

The president of the Argentine Rural Confederations (CRA), Jorge Chemes , in dialogue with Infobae commented: “This historic snowfall reveals the fragility of our country. The southern provinces will take years to recover. It is very difficult to produce in a context where there is no gas, electricity or telephone.

In Río Negro they declared an agricultural emergency due to snowfall.

Routes, roads, sewers, telephone and internet communication services, gas, electricity, have collapsed in the face of the phenomenon and make rescue efforts more complex for residents, families, workers and producers.

Thirteen 13 photos showing the enormity of the problem:

Thanks to Martin Siebert for these links

12 thoughts on “Patagonia – Record snowfall – Sheep and cows buried alive”

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  2. … and led to the Rio Negro government this week declaring a state of Emergency… really… the Rio ‘Negro’ government still hasn’t been renamed and this is the year 2020. This is the real emergency. The name needs to be changed ASAP to something like the: ‘Not White Rio River” government… besides buried alive sheep and cattle are are better for the environment… if this was a story about buried brocolli it wouldn’t have made the news. Go vegan(s)!

  3. I did suggest snowshoes yesterday.
    I wonder if anyone actually paid attention and ordered any ?
    Probably not.
    I expect snow like that in the northen hemisphere this winter.
    Those gauchos are as tough as they come, most western farmers will not be up to the mark.
    As for ‘common folk’ they will be as helpless as the beasts.

  4. nasty indeed, late in season so hope it might melt soonish?
    sheep will do better than cattle or less insulated animals but even they have limits, usually oxygen if theyre encased, food next of course.

    • Main problem for them is lack of food and water now, more than the low temperature. All grass or hay that could’ve survived is buried in snow

  5. There is a large Welsh-speaking community in Gaiman, Trelew , Chubut valley and elsewhere in Patagonia, following 19th century emigration from Wales. Many descendants only speak Welsh and Spanish. They have Welsh tea-rooms and eisteddfodau[Welsh music and poetry festivals] there.
    So the people of Patagonia are our Welsh kinfolk, and many are sheep farmers like ourselves.
    Therefore, I wish them well through this period of cold, snowy weather.
    Pob lwc i bawb ym Mhatagonia !! Aroshwch yn ddiogel !!

    • WOW Lyn, Thanks, I didn’t know that, I read somewhere that they found red indians speaking welsh after they so called ‘discovered’ America too.


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