Locusts threaten Niger farmland

2012-06-13 21:00
Locusts swarming. File

Locusts swarming. File

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Niamey - Large swathes of farmland are threatened by locusts in Niger even as the drought-prone African nation is grappling with a severe food crisis, a pest-control official said on Wednesday.

"Unless swarms are destroyed very early, locusts will reproduce and reach the cropland," Yahaya Garba, director of the CNLA agency in charge of pest-control, said in the latest bulletin of the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Niger.

At least 500 000ha of farmland and one million hectares of pasture land could be devastated.

"Locusts are about to reach the Sahel [region], and notably northern Mali and Niger," Garba said adding that the migratory species was invading the area from southeast Algeria and neighbouring Libya.

The first swarms were spotted in northern Niger late last month and have started to migrate south where most Niger farmland is concentrated.

More than 80% of Niger's population of 15 million live on farm produce and six million are facing a new food crisis already, out of 18 million in the entire Sahel belt, according to United Nations figures.

"The fight [against the locusts] must be fought intensively and immediately," warned Garba, appealing for international assistance.

There was a major risk that locusts invade the area from Mali where state agencies do not have access to locust reproduction zones as the north is under the control of armed rebel groups.

The UN's Rome-based food agency said earlier this month that political insecurity and conflicts in North Africa were hindering efforts to control the swarms of desert locusts.

Niger last faced desert locust swarms in 2003-05.

Read more on:    niger  |  west africa

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News
 

US biker deaths down: What's the secret?

Motorcycle deaths are on track to decline for a second year in the US thanks to a so far - on bikes - little-used road safety accessory.

 

Stay safe

US biker deaths down: What's the secret?
Pro's and con's of accredited driver-training
Juvenile pillion riders? Play safe...
Need a family ride? SA's top Mommy Cars
Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You are eager to please and expand your horizons today. You may take on more than you anticipated and feel the effects later. Keep...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.