Desert Locusts Hit Yemen [Archives:1998/12/Local News]

March 23 1998

According to sources at the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, a huge swarm of adult desert locusts entered Yemen on 17 March and landed in the areas of Bani Hattan, Bani Fayid, and Hawiya in Meedi Directorate, Hajja. Covering an area of more than 50 sq. km, the locusts started to mate and the females started to lay their eggs, already.

This is the biggest swarm to come from the western shores of the Red Sea this year, the sources indicated. Surveying teams, belonging to the Center for Monitoring and Controlling Desert Locusts, are currently surveying the affected region to ascertain the best way to combat this menace.
Yemeni locust fighters were able, during February 10 – March 4, to eradicate swarms of flying and newly born locusts, which covered an area of 17,000 sq. hectares in the directorates of Abs, Hairan, and Meedi in Hajja.
More swarms are expected to come from Sudan, Eritrea, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. A swarm of locusts includes on average 400 million insects, and devours an amount of food enough to feed 400,000 people for an entire year.