Migrating locust swarms have been identified as an important threat to agricultural populations since biblical times. The desert locust (DL), one of the principal migratory species, breeds in semi-arid areas in a vast geographical band stretching from West Africa through the Middle East to South West Asia. Desert Locust Control (DLC) costs have been estimated at an approximate average of $US 38 million per annum, of which almost 40% is financed through international assistance.
Over the last decade there has been increasing questioning as to how justified this is, in terms of the actual benefits it produces, and whether there might be more economically efficient ways of addressing the threat of DL.
The present report attempts to answer the questions: How do poor and marginal farmers see the problem of desert locust? How do DLC programmes affect them and are there alternative ways of helping them address the threat that DL may present to their livelihoods?
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