Desert Locust Bulletin 462 (March 2017) [EN/AR]

from Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Published on 31 Mar 2017

General Situation during March 2017
Forecast until mid-May 2017

The Desert Locust situation improved during March and became calm in all countries. Low numbers of locusts were present in a few countries and limited ground control operations were carried out in Morocco. Small-scale breeding is expected to occur during the spring in the interior of Saudi Arabia, Yemen and southeast Iran where good rains fell in March. Although this will cause locust numbers to increase slightly, they should remain below threatening levels. Spring breeding will also occur in Northwest Africa if more rain falls along the southern side of the Atlas Mountains. Regular surveys should be conducted throughout the spring to monitor the situation and prepare for the summer breeding period.

Western Region. The situation remained calm in the region during March. Limited control operations (20 ha) were carried out against high densities of adults, some of which were copulating, in the northern portion of the Western Sahara in southern Morocco. Low numbers of adults continued to mature in the central Western Sahara, and in northwest and northern Mauritania. Isolated adults were present near irrigated farms in the central Sahara of Algeria. If more rains fall, limited breeding may occur in the aforementioned areas as well as along the southern side of the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and Algeria. A few small groups could form in northern Western Sahara as vegetation dries out. No locusts were reported elsewhere in the region.

Central Region. The locust situation improved in Saudi Arabia as a result of previous control operations, and no locusts were seen in March during intensive surveys. Similarly, locust numbers declined in Sudan and Yemen where only scattered adults remained in a few places along the Red Sea coast, and scattered adults were present in southeast Egypt. Ecological conditions are expected to improve in the interior of Saudi Arabia and Yemen where widespread, good rains fell after mid-March. Consequently, one generation of breeding could occur, causing locust numbers to increase slightly in both countries. Smaller-scale breeding may also occur in coastal and interior areas of northern Oman.

Eastern Region. No locusts were reported and the situation remained calm in the region during March. However, good rains fell in coastal and interior areas of southeast Iran that are likely to allow one generation of small-scale breeding to occur during the forecast period, causing locust numbers to increase slightly.