“Target locust breeding grounds,” Entomologists urge the Government
The Entomology society of Kenya has urged the Government to target the breeding habitats if they are to eradicate the locusts completely. The society’s chair, Dr. Nderitu has insisted that targetting the breeding areas will help prevent the locusts from multiplying in numbers. “If the Government works closely with the affected Counties to identify the potential breeding areas and target them then we can end this havoc in the shortest time, ” said Dr. Nderitu.
The society has warned that locust has already laid their eggs and if that is not targetted they will hatch and start a new invasion. According to a member of the society Professor George the locusts lay lots of eggs which hatch in about two weeks and they take another 2-3 weeks to mature. The risk is that if we kill the adults then the eggs will hatch and in a couple of weeks we will start the cycle of aerial sprays again, warned the society.
The experts said that the desert locusts are said to have migrated from Ethiopia and Somalia and are now in the country since the 28th December 2019, adding that the residents have tried to control to no avail.
Prof George Ong`amo said that the locusts are likely to propagate due to the favorable conditions, therefore, they should target their breeding areas and kill the population that might emerge.
The Director of Research, Mary Gikundu suggested that the male locusts should be attracted using chemical hormones ‘pheromones’ to prevent breeding.
She also added that the country should have regional biosurveillance between the semi-desert countries to provide regional communication, therefore preventing other potential invasions.