Upsurge begins to decline
The current upsurge showed signs of significant decline during March as Desert Locust swarms continued to decrease in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia due to ongoing control operations and poor rainfall. Swarms remained immature, waiting for the spring rains that are required for maturation and egg laying. While this may still occur in April, below-normal rainfall expected this spring would limit breeding to parts of northern Kenya and southern Ethiopia at a much lower scale than last year. If this is followed by poor rainfall this summer in northeast Ethiopia, then the Desert Locust situation should return to normal. Limited breeding occurred in northeast Tanzania from remnants of earlier swarms. Although winter-bred infestations declined along both side of the Red Sea, late hatching and hopper band formation occurred in Sudan. More importantly, widespread hatching and hopper band formation took place in the interior of Saudi Arabia where control operations combined with earlier than normal dry and hot conditions should be able to reduce these infestations. In addition, strong winds carried a few small mature swarms to Kuwait and southwest Iran. This could lead to hatching and band formation in southwest Iran during April and May. The situation remained calm in other regions and no significant developments are expected.