The Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries-MAAIF has launched the emergency control of tail caterpillars in Lwengo district central Uganda as the destructive caterpillars spread to more villages in the district.
The caterpillars have so far spread to five villages including; Kabusirabo, Kyenvunikidde, Kyetume, Kaamusenene, and Kyawagonya all in Lwengo Rural sub county, with panic engulfing the farmers since November 7, 2023.
OUTCRIES: Ms. Betty Namukasa, a resident and farmer whose entire maize plantation has been destroyed by the caterpillars in Kyenvunikidde village wants the government to intervene swiftly and kill these caterpillars.
DESTRUCTION AND INTERVENTION SO FAR: Reports from a district survey indicate that the caterpillars have affected over 30 acres of, mainly, coffee, beans and groundnuts.
MAAIF has confirmed that the caterpillar control intervention is being rolled out through the Department of Crop Protection.
MAAIF has provided 300 litres of Cypermethrin (5% EC) for demonstration on control, received on behalf of Lwengo District Local Government by the Resident District Commissioner, Mr. Ramathan Walugembe and D/LC V Mr. Vincent Birimuye.
CLIMATE CHANGE: Besides other challenges that have hit the farming and agriculture sector due to climate change, Mr. Vincent Birimuye who is the district vice chairman says they have already been hit by drought and other disasters. He now wants the Ministry of Disaster Preparedness and Prime Minister’s office to help the local farmers who have lost their plantations.
ALSO READ: The Food & Agriculture Organization-FAO says; projections on yield reduction show a drop of up to 50%, and crop revenue is forecast to fall by as much as 90% by 2100. The impact of climate change on African agriculture. African agriculture sector is also likely to experience periods of prolonged droughts, floods during El- Nino events, and other disasters.