Swarm Invasion Hit East Africa Nations

.Several East African countries, Ethiopia, Somalia, and Kenya are struggling to cope with a swarm invasion. The invasion has lasted over a month, inflicting fear in the aviation, public, and agriculture sectors.

The locusts, grasshopper family, have led to the “worst situation in 25 years” as termed by FAO. Part of Africa is suffering its worst invasion for decades.

These grasshopper swarms are up to one kilometer wide, as reported by FAO. They incorporate up to 80 million hungry little pests, and journey up to a hundred and thirty kilometers per day.

They have formed in eastern Ethiopia and northern Somalia and threatening South Sudan and Uganda. 

This article will highlight the hazards posed by the locusts and how authorities have coped so far. 

Swarm Invasion interferes with Ethiopian Airlines.

Last week, they compelled an Ethiopian Airlines flight to make an emergency touchdown by a swarm of grasshoppers. The incident took place while the planes were on its way to Dire Dawa, a city in Ethiopia. 

The incident reported by AeroNews took place on Thursday, 9 January 2020. It affected a Boeing 737-700 flight ET363 flying from Djibouti to Ethiopia. 

According to the report, it ingested grasshoppers into engines, which substantially reduced clarity from the cockpit windows. The crew tried to land in Dire Dawa before the decision to divert to Addis Ababa was made.  The airplane landed safely some thirty minutes later.

Insect swarms pose several threats to planes.  They are likely to damage engines, blockage of consumption points, and obstruction of windscreens and landmarks on the ground.

Shooting locusts in Somalia

Farmers in Somalia appealed to their government and the world to protect their pants from an overwhelming locust invasion. 

“Locusts already ate our grazing area, so we are now fighting to save at least our farm, where we planted watermelon and beans. We aren’t able to protect them, and we call on the Somali government and international community to help us,” said Jamad Mohamed, a farmer in Dhusamareb. 

“Locusts devoured the whole area and have now reached our farm to eat our plants, as you can see. This is the end, we have nothing left to feed our children, and we aren’t even able to buy from the market,’‘ said Jirow Qorhere, Somalian farmer. 

 FAO says the insects have destroyed over 175,000 acres of farmland in Somalia and Ethiopia, threatening food supply in the countries.

 The battle and chaos in the country have averted the spraying of pesticides using an airplane.  An action FAO termed as the ‘ideal control measure.’ Media affiliated to terrorist team Al Shabab stated that farmers had been shooting at the large swarms using PKM rifles. An average swarm of locusts will ruin plants ample to feed 2,500 human beings for a year, according to the United Nations.

Kenyans mock minister over locust

 In Kenya, the swarm invasion had made headlines when the agriculture minister got mocked on social media.  This was after asking people to share images of suspicious insects.

 Agriculture Minister Mwangi Kiunjuri instructed journalists about the fantastic way to manipulate the locusts would be to report their presence, including that they needed not to be improper for different insects.

 ‘‘If you see any insect which you suspect could be a locust, please take pictures and post on social media, and they will reach us… so we don’t have insects that are not locusts,’‘ the minister said.

 Kenyans instead took to social media and submitted all varieties of creatures, animals, and insects. They used social media to ask the minister to affirm whether these were locusts.

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