Severe drought gripping northeastern Brazil - the worst in 50 years - is taking its toll on more than 1100 towns, even triggering fighting in rural areas.
An average of one person a day is being killed in "water wars", while scores of animals are wasting away before perishing, the O Globo newspaper reported.
Short water supplies have devastated farm output, the report said, endangering the lives of local people and their livestock.
Many people in the area have lost half their stock, and the Government has reduced forecasts for corn, soy and bean crops.
In Pernambuco, 66 municipalities are on emergencies, local dams are drying up, rivers have run dry and animals looking for water in the riverbed can find only the odd muddy puddle.