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Desert Locust situation update 2 September 2016

Hopper bands form in Ethiopia and N Somalia from earlier swarm coming from Yemen

Dozens of small hopper bands have formed in the railway area of eastern Ethiopia and in adjacent escarpment areas of northwest Somalia. The bands are a result of a few small swarms that arrived from Yemen in late July and early August and laid eggs. The swarm movement from Yemen coincides with a similar movement to Pakistan at about the same time. Ground control operations were carried out in Pakistan and are currently underway in Ethiopia. Limited operations are expected to start shortly in northwest Somalia using biopesticides.

In Yemen, the situation remains very serious because of good rains and the inability to undertake survey and control operations due to insecurity. Another generation of breeding is in progress with hopper bands forming in the interior and on the southern coast near Aden. There remains a moderate to high risk that more adult groups and swarms could form in these areas and move through the highlands and onto the Red Sea coast and into adjacent areas of Saudi Arabia while other swarms could move to the Horn of Africa. All countries should remain extremely vigilant.

Elsewhere, the situation remains calm. Low numbers of adults are widely distributed throughout the summer breeding area of the northern Sahel in West Africa and Sudan, and along the Indo-Pakistan border due to widespread rainfall and favourable ecological conditions. Small-scale breeding will continue in these areas, causing locust numbers to increase. By mid-October, a few adult groups could appear in west and northwest Mauritania as vegetation dries out.

Previous updates

Latest Desert Locust Bulletin (No. 455, August 2016)

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Previous Desert Locust Bulletin (No. 454, July 2016)

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Current situation (click for larger view)


Current Desert Locust threat (click for larger view)