ISLAMABAD: The National Locust Control Center (NLCC) has achieved a milestone on Tuesday as no locust was found in any of the provinces.
According to press statement issued by the Ministry of National food Security, no locust was found in provinces of Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Sindh during a survey.
The NLCC surveyed around 129,072 hectares area of land during the past twenty-four hours however presence of swarms of locust was not found in any area, according to the statement.
During the past 6 months, the locust control operations carried out on 11,34,161 hectares of land across the country.
Earlier, the NLCC had announced that Sindh, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces have been cleared of the swarms of locusts.
Swarms of the pest posing threat to Pakistan’s food security still present in Balochistan, the NLCC said.
The swarms of locust had effected 61 districts in four provinces of the country, the NLCC stated.
In June last year, swarms of locusts attacked cotton fields in Khairpur, Sukkur, and Ghotki in Sindh. Farmers had to bear losses of hundreds of thousands of rupees due to crop loss in the attack.
Crops were affected in Khairpur’s Naaro, Chondko, Thari Meerwah, Sukkur’s Saleh Pat, Thikrato, Mubarakpur and Ghotki’s Khanpur Mahar, and Khangarh.
The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in first week of September 2019 warned that the situation relating to locusts in Pakistan was “most serious” as a second generation of the insect had been bred.
According to the FAO’s Locust Watch report, there remains a risk of further breeding, causing locust numbers to increase, with the possibility of swarm formation from late September onward.
Yemen and India are also facing a similar situation, and the situation could deteriorate in Ethiopia and Eritrea, FAO report said.