What are locusts?

General

2020 has seen huge swarms of locusts causing damage of epic proportions on the Horn of Africa. The swarms are now moving to threaten both India and Pakistan. The devastation that locusts due to crops and farming is catastrophic and could lead to dramatic food shortages in these already impoverished regions.

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Locusts are not a new problem, having been around since at least 3200 BC when they were busy bothering the pharaohs of ancient Egypt. They can appear in their millions and then vanish. Thankfully, we don’t have this problem in the UK but for other pest problems, contact a Pest Control Essex company like https://www.bpcpestcontrol.co.uk/

What is a locust?

Basically, a locust is a kind of grasshopper. So, what differentiates a grasshopper from a locust? A locust harbours a superpower in which it can go through an incredible change in development. Normally, a locust will spend its life unnoticed and green, like an average grasshopper. This can go on for years. However, when the conditions are right – such as lots of rain and humidity – they suddenly increase in numbers and begin to recognise each other around them.

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The amazing change involves their physiology – their brain transforms, their colour changes and they change in size. They start to become attracted to each other and begin to swarm in huge formations. This is when the problems begin. Agriculture is ravaged and they will eat pretty much anything in their path.

A swarm can consist of tens of millions of these critters and a dark buzzing cloud of them can be as big as a football pitch or even a small city!

Written by suNCh8

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