Starting from 11th April 2020 till 21st July 2020, control operations have been done in 1,95,450 hectares area in States of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana by Locust Circle Offices (LCOs). Till 21st July 2020, control operations have been done in 1,88,181 hectares area in States of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Uttarakhand and Bihar by State Governments.
In the intervening night of 21st -22nd July, 2020, control operations were carried out at 29 places in 11 districts viz. Jaisalmer, Barmer, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Churu, Sikar, Nagaur, Jaipur, Pali, Hanumangarh, and Sriganganagar of Rajasthan by LCOs. Besides this, Rajasthan State Agriculture Departments also carried out control operations at 2 places in Dausa district in the intervening night of 21st -22nd July, 2020 against small groups and scattered population of locusts.
Presently, 104 control teams with spray vehicles are deputed / deployed in the States of Rajasthan, and Gujarat, and more than 200 Central Government personnel are engaged in locust control operations. Further, 5 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 has conducted trials in anti-locust operation by using a Mi-17 helicopter. The results are encouraging.
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.
Today (22.07.2020), swarms of immature pink locusts and adult yellow locusts are active in Jaisalmer, Barmer, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Churu, Sikar, Nagaur, Jaipur, Pali, Hanumangarh, Sriganganagar and Dausa districts of Rajasthan.
1. LWO operation @ 4DLMPugal-Bikaner, Rajasthan
2. LWO operation @ Jaitaran-Pali, Rajasthan
3. LWO operation @ Dhani modpatti-Dausa, Rajasthan
4. A drone in action @ Dudu-Jaipur, Rajasthan
5. LWO operation @ Rawatsar-Hanumangarh, Rajasthan
6. A locust congregation captured before control operation @ Gotan-Nagaur, Rajasthan
7. A section of locust mortality @ Gotan merta –Nagaur, Rajasthan.
Food and Agriculture Organization’s Locust Status Update of 21.07.2020 indicates that the risk of swarm migration from 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.
The image below depicts the desert locust global forecast for July, 2020
Weekly virtual meeting on Desert Locust of South-West Asian countries (Afghanistan, India, Iran and Pakistan) is being organized by FAO. 15 virtual meetings of the technical officers of South West Asian countries have taken place so far