Agriculture authorities in Luweero district are investigating the invasion of insects similar to locusts in Bombo town council. On Wednesday, residents of Gogonya A, B and Mpakawewo villages in Bombo town council petitioned Luweero District Agriculture Office after sighting what looked like locusts.
The insects change color to green, brown, yellow or black depending on their stage of metamorphosis. They also have long and hind legs but make less movement. The insects have been sighted in the gardens of Aisha Sadik and Hussein Kato, the Bombo town council LC V councilor among others.
Sadik Aisha, a farmer in Gogonya A village explains that the insects were first spotted on Tuesday evening, which triggered panic that they could have been invaded by locusts. She explains that the insects eat green leaves on trees and food crops.
Hussein Kato, the Bombo Town Councilor LC V, says that he cut down all trees that had been infested by the insects and sprayed the insects with insecticide to kill them in vain.
A team of agriculture officers and entomologists led by Luweero District Agriculture Officer, Haruna Kasirye rushed to the villages to investigate the invasion. He explains that although the insects were found not to be locusts but they belong to the same family of Acrididae.
He says that the insects belong to scientific suborder called cealifera and are locally known as ‘Entonyeze’ in Luganda. Kasirye says that they advised the farmers to spray against the insects using Cypermethrine insecticide or burn them to stop their spread.
Henry Lule, the Luweero District Entomology Officer, says the attack by various insects is as result of environmental degradation. Lule warns farmers in the area not to eat the insects, saying unlike locusts they are poisonous.
Farmers across the country are on high alert following the invasion of locusts in Karamoja sub region. Kotido is the latest district in Karamoja sub-region to be invaded by Desert Locusts.
The locusts arrived at Nakapelimoru and Rengen sub-counties from Kenya before they were sighted at Losilangit in Kotido Municipality.
The other affected districts are Abim, Amudat , Moroto Nakapiripirit Agago and Katakwi.