15 July 2020, New Delhi: The ongoing locust control operations have crossed 3 lakh hectares. On ground teams deployed by the state government are active in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Bihar.
Presently 60 control teams with spray vehicles are deployed and more than 200 Central Government personnel are engaged in the control operations. To strengthen the control capacity, 55 additional vehicles have also been purchased and deployed for locust control.
As per the local report, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh have reported minor crop loss in a few districts.
As per FAO’s Locust Status Update of 13 July 2020, more swarms are likely to form in northern Somalia in coming weeks. Many of the spring-bred swarms that migrated to Indo-Pak border before the monsoon rains, some continued east to northern states of India and a few groups reached Nepal.
The forecast is that these swarms will return to Rajasthan with the start of the monsoon in the coming days to join other swarms still arriving from Iran and Pakistan, which is expected to be supplemented by swarms from the Horn of Africa in about mid-July. Early breeding has already occurred along the Indo-Pak border where substantial hatching and band formation will take place in July that will cause the first-generation summer swarms to form in mid-August.