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SA confirms locust outbreak in Namibia, Karoo region

The outbreak may pose a threat to grazing lands in the region.
Image: Clarel Faniry Rasoanaivo, Reuters

A locust outbreak in Namibia and South Africa’s northwestern Karoo region may pose a threat to grazing lands in a region that’s already prone to droughts.

South Africa’s Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries confirmed the outbreak of brown locusts in a newsletter published on its website Monday. The outbreak isn’t linked to an unprecedented invasion of desert locusts in East Africa, it said.

South African authorities aim to prevent the development of flying swarms by intervening soon after the insects have hatched or while they’re in the so-called hopper stage, the department said. Six pesticides registered for locust control are available in emergency volumes in the region, it said.

Swarms of desert locusts are spreading through Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia, destroying crops and pastures at a voracious pace. Kenya has intensified aerial spraying to combat the invasion as the United Nations called for emergency measures to stop the insects from breeding.

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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