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In Sumba, pests destroy crops and starve populations! We can help them!

This article links to these categories: Environment | Food Shortages

Author of this post

Kawan: Alex Wettstein

Date of Publication

The August 16, 2020

Number of comments

Extract | In East Sumba, In addition to the pandemic, the economic crisis that is hitting hard on the populations of one of the poorest regions of Indonesia, farmers have to face a real scourge: Pests that destroy crops and therefore starve populations. These include caterpillars and grasshoppers among other plant pests. We are there to help these populations to survive, with all of you!

Hello everyone from Sumba East folks, how are you?

The Kambaniru River is a source of life for the people of Sumba who live around it.

The river is not only a source of water for daily needs, but it is also above all an essential resource so that communities can use this stream of water to grow plants, vegetables, fruits, and their gardens. Every day, in principle, vegetables, fruits, or other food resources are harvested.

Regarding the corn harvest (basic product for local food with rice), everything in principle goes as every year, as usual… For everything to go normally, nature must be kind and offer what is most precious: Sun and water, a real dry season, and a real rainy season. But this year is not the season that disrupts the crops.

In addition to the pandemic, the economic crisis that is hitting hard on the populations of the poorest region of Indonesia, farmers have to face a real scourge: Pests that destroy crops and therefore starve populations.

Pests and other parasites are always a challenge for farmers around the world, it goes without saying! In Sumba, parasites, pests are present in a massive way at the moment as you can see on the picture we added on this News. And since bad luck never goes alone, people have to deal with more than one type, of plant pests. These include caterpillars and grasshoppers among other plant pests.

In 2020, the big challenge for farmers in Sumba is not only related to the economic turbulence caused by the pandemic. But also a drop in demand for vegetables linked to the crisis, the discrimination of market gardeners in Lambanapu, and its surroundings (including Kiritana) due to the presence of patients infected by COVID-19 in these regions, villages… But also because of the locust attack which ravages crops and therefore vital goods to feed themselves, to fill the bellies!

Huge numbers of grasshoppers destroyed crops in several areas of eastern Sumba, such as Mauliru, causing crop failures in several rice fields. In Kiritana, these same grasshoppers attacked corn and vegetables. And even in Lapinu, which is quite far from the town of Waingapu, has been very widely attacked by pests. Many producers and farmers have complained to government authorities about pests! But not much has been heard of prevention or eradication efforts from official agriculture-related services.

In collaboration with the communities that carried out activities in Kiritana, Kawan Baik Indonesia and Fair Future Indonesia provided basic food packages to affected communities.

Thanks to the volunteers who were very enthusiastic about delivering “Goodies bags” to each house, namely: Edwin from the Namu Angu Youth Forum in Malumbi village and also to “Sumba Volunteer” with Indah, Alan, Orfi, Memey, and Desi.

If you want to support our activities here in Sumba, we suggest you click here on this link. Send you love an light and see you soon in Sumba kawans!

Kawan Nofi, Waingapu, August 15th, 2020.

Grasshopper invasion destroying everything in minutes

Grasshoppers are plant-eaters, with a few species at times becoming serious pests of cereals, vegetables and pasture, especially when they swarm in their millions as locusts and destroy crops over wide areas. They protect themselves from predators by camouflage; when detected, many species attempt to startle the predator with a brilliantly-coloured wing-flash while jumping and (if adult) launching themselves into the air, usually flying for only a short distance.
*-Picture by Kawan Gogon – Kawan Baik Indonesia

Grasshoppers are typically ground-dwelling insects with powerful hind legs that allow them to escape from threats by leaping vigorously. As hemimetabolous insects, they do not undergo complete metamorphosis; they hatch from an egg into a nymph or “hopper” which undergoes five moults, becoming more similar to the adult insect at each developmental stage. At high population densities and under certain environmental conditions, some grasshopper species can change color and behavior and form swarms. Under these circumstances, they are known as locusts.
*-Picture by Kawan Gogon – Kawan Baik Indonesia

Your comment and feedback is invaluable

…to all of us here who are working in the field. You have a role to play, you can bring us your knowledge, it will be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much for your words and your benevolence.

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