Desert Locusts are a major threat to crop production.
Photo: ©FAO/Carl de Souza


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Due to weather conditions, Desert Locusts multiply and spread causing damage to crops. FAO warns of outbreaks in Yemen and the Horn of Africa.

Desert Locust summer breeding, amplified by heavy rains, can pose a serious threat to agricultural production areas of Yemen, Sudan, Eritrea and parts of Ethiopia and northern Somalia during the next three months, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) warns in late July 2019. This could result in potentially adverse impacts on the agricultural seasonal yields and local economies, affecting food security and livelihoods of the populations in the countries concerned.

Intensive ground and aerial control operations mounted in Iran (712 000 ha), Saudi Arabia (219 000 ha) and Sudan (105 000 ha) this year undoubtedly reduced locust populations but could not entirely prevent swarms from forming and moving to the traditional summer breeding areas in Yemen, Sudan, the Horn of Africa and along both sides of the Indo-Pakistan border. 

After becoming airborne, swarms of tens of millions of locusts can fly up to 150 km a day with the wind.

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