Locust control operations carried out in Rajasthan, Gujarat

New Delhi: Locust Circle Offices (LCOs) carried out locust control operations at 36 places in nine districts–Jaisalmer, Barmer, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Churu, Nagaur, Jhunjhunu, Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar of Rajasthan and one place in Kutch district of Gujarat against swarms and hoppers on the intervening night of July 26 July 27.

Today swarms of immature pink locusts, adult yellow locusts and/or hoppers are active in Jaisalmer, Barmer, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Churu, Nagaur, Sriganganagar, Jhunjhunu, Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar of Rajasthan and one place in Kutch district of Gujarat.

Starting from April 11, 2020, till July 26, 2020, control operations have been done in 2,14,642 hectares area in States of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana by LCOs. Till July 26, 2020, control operations have been done in 2,14,130 hectares area in the States of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Uttarakhand and Bihar by State Governments.

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No significant crop losses have been reported in the States of Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Haryana. However, some minor crop losses have been reported in some districts of Rajasthan.

Presently, 104 central control teams with spray vehicles are deployed in the States of Rajasthan, and Gujarat, and more than 200 Central Government personnel are engaged in locust control operations.

Further, five companies with 15 drones are deployed at Barmer, Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Nagaur and Phalodi in Rajasthan for effective control of locusts on tall trees and in inaccessible areas through spraying of pesticides. A Bell helicopter has been deployed in Rajasthan for use in Scheduled Desert Area as per the need. Indian Air Force also is conducting trials in anti-locust operation by using Mi-17 helicopter.

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Food and Agriculture Organization’s Locust Status Update of July 21 indicates that the risk of swarm migration from the Horn of Africa prevails in coming weeks. In Somalia, the swarms are moving eastwards across the north and a limited number of swarms could migrate across the Indian Ocean to the Indo-Pakistan border area; during the remainder of this month.

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