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Situation update 20 June 2007

Aerial operations being organized in Yemen

The Desert Locust situation is extremely serious in the interior of Yemen where substantial breeding has taken place because of unusually heavy rains that fell over a large and remote area on the southern edge of the Empty Quarter. A second generation of egg-laying is in progress and hatching has already started in a few places. More hatching will occur and hopper bands will form in the coming weeks. Recent surveys have found additional infestations in some remote wadis in the Hadhramaut region. Breeding is also in progress in Shabwah governorate.

FAO is organizing aerial operations supported by the UN Emergency Fund and assistance from the Government of Japan and the World Food Programme. The operations are planned to commence in mid-July and will be carried out against hopper bands and adult swarms in order to minimize the threat to crops, pasture and neighbouring countries.

In Southwest Asia, control operations treated hoppers and adults that were forming groups on the southeastern coast of Iran in areas affected by cyclone Gonu earlier this month. Smaller infestations were treated near Uthal, Pakistan. Egg-laying is in progress in the summer breeding areas in Rajasthan, India near the Pakistani border.

Small-scale breeding is expected to occur in the Sahel of West Africa (Mauritania, Mali, Niger and Chad) once the seasonal rains commence.

Previous updates

Latest Desert Locust Bulletin (No. 344, May 2007)

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Previous Desert Locust Bulletin (No. 343, April 2007)

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Press Release (6 June 2007)

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Any swarms that form which are not controlled in the interior of Saudi Arabia could move to Sudan and Yemen and, perhaps, to Oman and Iran (click on map to enlarge).