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Northern Cape farms warned of locusts

Economy

Johannesburg - Farmers in the Northern Cape have been warned to act swiftly to protect their crops against attacks by swarms of locusts.

The locusts posed a serious threat if they were not well-controlled, especially in the Pixley Ka Seme District, said provincial agricultural spokesman Phemelo Manankong.

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A locust eats a plant as a plague of the insects is affecting parts of Mexico's prime tourist destination Cancun September 27, 2006. Clouds of locusts have descended around the Mexican beach resort of Cancun, destroying corn crops and worrying officials in a region still recovering from the devastating fury of last year's Hurricane Wilma. REUTERS/Victor Ruiz (MEXICO)

“They can wipe out entire crops and natural vegetation that animals feed on, reducing a prosperous farmer to ruin with their voracious appetite,” he said.

The department said it had been faced with serious problems in the past when farmers were reluctant to report the crisis in advance.

Farmers were now being urged to immediately alert the department's locust control team and assist them by pointing out the locusts' settling destinations so control measures would be applied. - Sapa

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