Lifestyle

Locust attack in India and neighbouring countries: A first in my lifetime! (Mysteries of 2020)

A usual morning and we were occupied with the routine. Due to the Covid restrictions, most of the family members were at home. I remember stepping out in the backyard for some chore when my mom shouted,” Tiddi-dal, tiddi-dal!!”(Tiddi-dal is a swarm of locusts). Shocked, I looked up and noticed a large number of the crop-eating ‘beasts’ flying over my head. It was a curious moment for me yet I had to rush indoors to save myself from a possible collision. Going inside couldn’t dampen my eagerness to view the locust-swarm swiftly gliding and covering the majority area of my sight.

Locusts in a house? Relax, it’s 2020!!

Never in my lifetime had I seen a swarm of locusts. Yes, reading about them is common but the real-life experience was not very pleasant. TV channels had been announcing about the locust attacks for a week but my city, I thought, was safe. I was WRONG!

Desert locusts: Basic facts

  • Usually lead shy, solitary lives
  • When locusts get crowded together they become gregarious mini-beasts
  • Colour of a locust changes from brown to pink (immature) and yellow (mature)
  • Swarm can be the size of Paris or New York
  • 40 million locusts eat the same amount of food daily as three million people
  • Crops are destroyed and livelihoods threatened when locusts attack in large numbers.

(Source: UN Food and Agriculture Organisation)

Desert Locusts: Facts
Desert Locusts: Facts

The crop eaters entered cities and roamed on highways. They fearlessly announced that there’s no fixed place or time for their visit and humans should be prepared to tackle their mischief.
Five months into 2020, we could understand the silent declaration.
On a positive note, I proudly tell my friends and relatives that I’ve seen a grand swarm of LOCUSTS in my own house.

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