FAO :: Locust Watch :: Information :: 2020 upsurge
Current upsurge (2019–2020)
This page presents an overview of current Desert Locust upsurge and recent photos and videos.

● Cyclones in May and October brought heavy rains that gave rise to favourable breeding conditions in the Empty Quarter of the southern Arabian Peninsula for at least nine months since June.
● As a result, three generations of breeding occurred that was undetected and not controlled.

● JANUARY: the first swarms left the Empty Quarter to Yemen and Saudi Arabia, reaching southwest Iran where heavy rains fell.
● FEBRUARY-JUNE: widespread spring breeding in Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Iran caused large numbers of swarms to form. Control operations were less successful in Iran and Yemen.
● JUNE-DECEMBER: swarms invade the Indo-Pakistan border from Iran and up to three generations occur due to longer than normal monsoon, giving rise to large numbers of swarms; In Yemen, swarms form and move to N Somalia and Ethiopia where breeding occurs and more swarms form.
● OCTOBER-DECEMBER: Swarms move from Ethiopia and N Somalia to Eritrea, Djibouti, E Ethiopia, the Ogaden, C and S Somalia to reach NE Kenya; hopper bands and swarms form along parts of the Red Sea coastal plains in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Eritrea and Sudan.

● JANUARY: Swarms continue to invade, spread, mature and lay eggs in Ethiopia and Kenya. Hatching occurs in NE Somalia. Other swarms move into interior of Yemen and Saudi Arabia.
● FEBRUARY: Swarms continue in Kenya, a few reach Uganda and South Sudan, groups reach Tanzania. Widespread hatching and bands in Kenya. Other swarms reach both sides of Persian Gulf.
● MARCH: widespread hatching causes a new generation of swarms to form in Ethiopia and Kenya. A few swarms invade Uganda and South Sudan. Widespread swarm laying and hatching in southern Iran.
● APRIL: More swarms form, mature and lay eggs in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and Yemen. Second-generation hopper bands form in Iran and Pakistan.
● MAY: Another generation of hatching and band formation in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and Yemen. Second-generation swarms form in Iran and Pakistan, and migrate to Indo-Pakistan, continuing to northern India.
● JUNE: Second-generation swarms form in NW Kenya and swarms form in Ethiopia, Somalia, and Yemen. Spring-bred swarms continue to move to Rajasthan and northern states of India.
● JULY: More swarms form in NW Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia, and Yemen. Some swarms move N to Ethiopia, other swarms move from Yemen to NE Ethiopia. First-generation laying, hatching and band formation occurs along Indo-Pakistan border.
● AUGUST: Swarms mature and lay in NE Ethiopia, some swarms invade Eritrea and breed; immature swarms persist in NW Kenya and N Somalia; bands and swarms continue in Yemen interior, some swarms move to SW Saudi Arabia.
● SEPTEMBER: Widespread hatching and band formation in NE Ethiopia and Yemen, immature swarms persist in N Somalia, N Kenya. Swarms arrive in E Sudan and lay. SW Asia returns to calm.
● OCTOBER: Numerous swarms form in Ethiopia and move E; swarms mature and lay in NE Somalia and move S; breeding declines in Yemen interior but bands and swarms form on Red Sea coast; bands form in E Sudan, Eritrea, Saudi Arabia.

Overview (click to zoom)


Warning (18/10/19)

Warning (28/10/19)

Somalia (17/12/19)


Videos (mpg)