Locust invasion in Kenya: Farmers’ crops devoured in seconds

Locust invasion in Kenya: Farmers’ crops devoured in seconds
Yes, those are all locusts. The whole field looks like that. February 2020 in Kenya. Channel 4 News, YouTube

[Ed. – The locusts have already hit Somalia and Ethiopia. The crop losses are staggering, destroying not just grain and vine crops but orchards – trees as well as their fruit.]

The locusts are so bad in some parts of Kenya that entire fields of crops are being devoured in as little as 30 seconds.

Moses Omondi, a program officer at Farm Radio, a charity that works with to bring information and news to farmers, says that in Kitui County, in eastern Kenya, there were no locusts this time last week. Now, entire farms have been destroyed. …

What stories are you hearing from farmers about what this locust infestation is doing to them? 

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Today one farmer [told me] all of his crops have already been consumed.

He is affected psychologically to the extent of telling me that, ‘If worst comes to worst, I can even commit suicide.’ …


Currently what most farmers are doing is … drumming.

Others are using whistles. They’re blowing the whistles from morning to evening. … Others are [using] motorbikes by pressing on the horns to scare the locusts. Others are being helped by police reservists … shooting guns so that the locusts can be scared. Others are shouting — literally shouting — the whole family, shouting on the farm to scare the locusts away.

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