desert locust in africa

Impact of desert locust on African poultry farm and solution

Recently, a severe locust disaster in East Africa has severely affected crops and economic development in Africa. What obvious impact will the locust disaster have on the poultry chicken farm industry in Africa now, and the future? At present, many farmers are very concerned. Next, we will analyze the impact of the locust disaster and the solutions to the locust disaster.


The origin of the locust plague


From the end of 2019 to the beginning of 2020, the desert locust disaster that originated in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia in eastern Africa was the worst locust disaster in Ethiopia and Somalia in 25 years. For Kenya, it was the largest pest threat in 70 years. . Based on the locust update monitored by FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) on February 10, desert locusts have spread to Uganda and Tanzania, and the reproduction of the Horn of Africa is continuing, which will lead to further locusts in Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya increase.


At present, the affected areas have been further expanded. The Horn of Africa, the two sides of the coast along the Red Sea coast, and southwestern Asia are all key areas. Among them, the Horn of Africa Desert Locust is the most serious. FAO says the Horn of Africa Desert Locust will form new populations in March and April, posing an unprecedented threat to food security and livelihoods in the region. Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, Madagascar and other countries have declared a state of emergency.


So, why did this large-scale African desert locust occur? What impact will it have on food in the affected areas and even global food security?


From the time of the locust disaster, in June 2019, desert locusts gathered in eastern Ethiopia and northern Somalia, and have entered a stage of rapid development. Although a series of hunting measures were carried out by neighboring countries at the time, the end of 2019 The abnormal rainfall has provided excellent conditions for the growth of locusts that had originally spawned a large amount of eggs. Therefore, the occurrence of the African locust disaster was due to the climate and geographical environment of Africa on the one hand, and the abnormal climate impact on the other. .


Locusts are most suitable for spawning in soil conditions where the moisture content is 10% -20% and the vegetation moisture content is less than 50%. Under this condition, the locusts can produce 200,000 to 400,000 eggs per square meter, and the locusts belong to Typical egg-laying ability is strong and the eggs are difficult to destroy. The climate is hot and dry in Africa, and it is called the tropical continent. Therefore, Africa is an excellent area for locusts to breed. In recent years, locust plagues have occurred in Africa. The other driving force of this locust plague is such abnormal weather. In recent years, global warming, coupled with the El Niño in 2019 continuing to the end of the year, have triggered a variety of extreme climates. Land temperatures around the world set a record, and the abnormal rainfall in East Africa at the end of 2019 was affected by this. After rainfall, it promotes the growth of ground vegetation and provides high-quality conditions for the survival of locusts after hatching. Furthermore, locusts have the characteristics of strong flight ability and more and more clusters. The locusts prefer to live alone, but will be affected by the increase in density to touch the hind leg nerves to change the habit of living alone. All these conditions have caused the locust plague.

Current impact:


The African locust is still spreading, destroying East Africa’s vegetation at an alarming rate, and threatening pastures and growing fruits and vegetables and crops. The Horn of Africa agricultural sector includes high-value crops such as corn and barley, as well as flowers, fruits and vegetables, herbs, cotton, palm trees, rubber trees, coffee, tea, sugar cane, and oilseeds.


According to FAO research, a 1-square-kilometer locust swarm is equivalent to 35,000 people in one day. The army of locusts can move an average of 150 kilometers a day. If it is not stopped, it will continue to cause disasters until June, when the number of locusts will increase. 500-fold increase. It has been more than 7 months since the occurrence of African locusts. It can be seen that the locust disaster will definitely have a serious impact on crop production and food security in the affected areas.




Impact on the aquaculture industry:


  1. Feed shortage. There will be breeding companies that will reduce corn production due to the sudden locust plague, and corn as the main raw material for chicken feed will inevitably lead to feed shortages, especially in Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, and Uganda and Tanzania.


  1. Imported feed increases and prices rise. There is a shortage of native feed in East Africa. Local governments and traders will import feed from abroad. Local shortages and imports will increase the feed price to a certain extent, but according to agricultural experts, the rising price will not be too high.


  1. Small and medium-sized farmers will face more intense competition. As a small and medium-sized farmer, it has low risk resistance and low capital. Compared with large multinational farming companies, it has certain disadvantages. At this time, small and medium farmers face greater challenges.


  1. African egg prices will rise. Feed shortages, coupled with the closure of some small farmers with low anti-risk capabilities, rising costs and increased risks, will inevitably raise egg prices. For farmers in East Africa, egg profits will increase at this time.


preventive solution


  1. For small and medium-sized farmers in Africa, do not expand for the time being, maintain cash flow and maintain daily feed and egg production for chickens.


  1. A certain amount of locusts can be caught as feed for chickens, so as to hedge against the adverse effects caused by local feed reduction.


  1. Consider importing feed. You can suggest to the government to import corn, soybean meal and other products needed for chicken farming. Small and medium-sized farmers will unite to form a feed procurement alliance to reduce procurement costs.


  1. Prepare your daily necessities in advance. Grain production reductions will cause food prices to rise. At this time, you should make a good living supplies reserve and feed reserves, waiting for egg prices to rise and bring better profits.


East Africa as a whole has a mild climate and is suitable for the growth of crops. Therefore, it is not necessary to be too nervous about this locust disaster. With the large-scale use of locust killing agents, Africa will soon resume food production and laying hen farming will soon resume. And poultry farmer will have better profits.



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