Oman Experiences Worst Locust Infestation Since 2014

Locusts
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Millions of insects have teemed over multiple governorates in Oman, in what is considered as one of the sultanate’s worst locust infestations.

Since the beginning of February, the ministry’s locust combating and plant protection department, in collaboration with local directorates, have been implementing measures to destroy the insects in a bid to protect its valuable crops. A total of 37 teams have been deployed at the South Al Sharqiyah, Al Wusta and Muscat governorates.

Experts deem the current locust infestation as the worst the sultanate has faced since 2014. Multiple factors such as Oman’s climate and geography help make it a good breeding ground for such insects to proliferate.

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The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MoAF), in cooperation with Muscat Municipality, is continuing its campaign to control desert locusts in several areas of Muscat such as Bausher, Qurm, Al Khuwayr and Wadi Adai, and six wilayats of North Sharqiyah. MoAF has said that desert locust control operations started in the villages of North Sharqiyah on Monday.

Control operations have been conducted in the wilayats of Ibra, Mudhaibi, Al Qabel, Wadi Bani Khalid, Dima Wa al Taien and steps have been taken to ensure that the necessary supplies are available for the operations.

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MoAF is also making efforts to identify locust hotspots, take steps to reduce their reproduction and curb damage to agricultural crops. The ministry urges keepers of livestock to be cautious and not graze animals for ten days.

The ministry has urged everyone to cooperate with it keeping public interest in mind.

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