After Covid-19, severe draughts that caused forest fires to rage, an earthquake in Zhaotong and the annual destructive and deadly floods of the rainy season, the next disaster on the scene for Yunnan is a small but ravenous insect.
For at least 5000 years, it has been a common and recurring event for locusts to swarm, threatening crops in the Horn of Africa. This year the spread of the pest is wider — reaching as far as Yunnan Province — due to extreme weather events. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization say that the locusts pose an unprecedented threat to the livelihoods of 10% of the world population.
Their imminent arrival was first predicted in May, and the first flying critters arrived in Xishuangbanna late June. At present experts are on the scene to try and limit the spread of the swarms.
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