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Sri Lanka’s agriculture department warns against risks of desert locusts

COLOMBO, Feb.18 (Xinhua) — Sri Lanka’s Department of Agriculture, on Tuesday said if the overseas desert locust plague persists, the probability of locusts entering the island country would increase, causing devastation to crops.

Local media quoted the Department of Agriculture as saying that currently although it is extremely unlikely that desert locusts would directly migrate into Sri Lanka’s inland areas, local agrarian communities were however being made aware of the threat.

Last week, the UN issued a warning about the numbers of desert locusts currently swarming through much of East Africa as they had reached Uganda and Tanzania.

The outbreak is the largest in decades and has already devastated crops in countries with fragile food security, such as Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya.

Desert locusts are considered as one of the most destructive migratory pests. They can fly 150 km with the wind every day and survive for about three months.

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