Locusts invade Melbourne

Melbourne commuters marvelled on Friday at locusts landing on the streets of Australia's second-biggest city.

Melbourne commuters marvelled on Friday at locusts landing on the streets of Australia's second-biggest city.

Published Nov 12, 2010

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Sydney -

Melbourne commuters marvelled on Friday at locusts landing on the streets of Australia's second-biggest city.

“We've had lots of reports this morning,” a Victoria state government spokeswoman said. “The hot northerly wind has been a perfect vehicle for them to be flown into Melbourne.”

Abundant rainfall in the south-east of the continent has provided ideal breeding for the formation of swarms that can number 50 million and devastate crops as well as pester motorists and pilots.

With the worst plague in 30 years predicted as the southern hemisphere summer hots up, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) warned pilots that swarms made flying hazardous.

“They can get sucked into intakes, they can get sucked up tubes that feed the airspeed indicators,” CASA spokesman Peter Gibson said. “Obviously if you get enough of them it restricts visibility if they splatter all over the windscreen.” - Sapa-dpa

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