Mar 29, 2016
Swarms of locusts are still a very real plague today. They afflict drought areas, especially after a rare rainfall, leaving a trail of destruction behind. In Africa, this regularly leads to disastrous famines. Fighting the locusts with crop dusters is too costly for many of the poorer countries, and classic insecticides take an extremely high toll on the environment and the remaining plants.
Researchers all over the world are looking for new, more effective ways to combat the invaders. Scientists at the University of Halle in Germany are experimenting with pheromones that might upset the insects’ mating behavior.
In Australia, where swarms of locusts have recently been destroying crops in parts of the country that never had this problem before, the locusts are being attacked with crop-dusting helicopters that apply pesticides in minimum dosage. But an aerial application is extremely sensitive to the wind, and the deadly mist might easily miss its target.
“… locusts … invaded all Egypt …. They covered all the ground until it was black,” reports the Bible. “They devoured … everything growing in the fields … – nothing green remained on trees or palms in all the lands of Egypt.” (Exodus 10:14–15)