Plague-Like Locust Swarms Sweep Saudia Arabia, East Africa, Asia

Locusts are swarming across East Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, threatening local food supplies and basic livelihood, reports the journal Nature.

At least 20 million people are in danger as scientists and governments rush to bring the insects under control.

The outbreak today coincides with cyclones in 2018, and the warm weather at the end of 2019, compounded by unseasonably heavy rains. Scientists detected vast swarms at the beginning of 2020 in Somalia and Ethiopia, and afterward they insects spread wild across countries like Kenya — where they’ve been a constant plague-like presence for 70 years — Sudan and Uganda. Swarms were also detected in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, and India.

Previously, Kenya saw an incredibly large swarm occupy an area of 2,400 square kilometers (926 square miles), more than three times the size of New York City. A swarm of locusts typically occupies 100 square kilometers, but even at this smaller size, between 4 and 8 billion locusts are flying and buzzing around inside, collectively capable of eating the equivalent of what 3.5 million people can eat in a single day.

Source: Interesting Engeering

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