Ugandan growers alarmed as locusts adapt to spraying

Scientists are warning that locusts have become more adept at beating measures meant to eliminate them. A new breed of insects has developed adaptations such as hiding under leaves and change of behaviour such as dispersing, making it hard for aerial spraying to kill them as the country battles to contain the invasion believed to be the worst in 27 years.

Collecting accurate data on the swarms has also become more difficult as their migration patterns and clustering has changed. Samburu County Special Programmes Chief Officer Daniel Lesaigor said this has dealt a big blow to efforts to contain them. “Aerial spray teams endure difficulties in trying to locate them. But we have learnt that they often hide beneath stalks and leaves,” Mr Lesaigor said.

According to, also Lesaigor noted that the first swarms were easier to predict, compared to the new breed: “It’s not easy to spot them using aerial surveillance.”

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