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Swarms of desert locusts invade Mandera

At least 11 swarms of locust have invaded Mandera County, since their first sighting on 1st November 2021 in parts of Mandera North Sub County.

According to Diisow Noor Haji, Agriculture Extension, Training and Locust Lead Officer, the swarms have entered the county from three different points.

The swarms from Somalia entered from Lafey and spread to Wargadud, while other two swarms entered from neighbouring Ethiopia.

The swarms from Ethiopia spread to Rhamu and Banisa sub counties causing huge destruction.

Diisow confirmed that the swarms have destroyed crops and continue causing damage to farmers in Mandera.

He says swarm of desert locusts can have millions of individual insects covering several square kilometers at one time and causes a huge damage within a short time.

“Locust are causing damage to our crops, the swarms are spreading very fast to every part of the county. Our bread basket is at risk,” says Diisow.

He added that desert locusts eat everything green and destroy crops and pasture that farmers along river dauwa and herder in the county depend on.

Diisow appreciates government and partners like FAO for putting in place strategies to fight desert locust though challenges still exist.

“Government and partners are doing a good job, but we still have challenges, effective chemicals are not available as at now but we are looking forward to have them soon,” added Diisow.

About 6,600 hectares of land is approximated to have been destroyed by desert locust within the last one week in Mandera.

By Charles Matacho

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