Desert Locust

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Related to Schistocerca: Schistocerca gregaria

Desert Locust


(Schistocerca gregaria), a gregarious insect of the superfamily Acridoidea; a harmful polyphagous pest. The body is 46-61 mm long; the elytra have dark spots, and the wings are light with no dark central ligature. Sexually mature individuals are lemon yellow, and those that have just acquired wings are lilac-pink. In the gregarious stage the nymphs are yellow with black spots, and in the solitary stage they are yellowish or greenish. The cylindrical egg pods are 7 to 10 cm long and contain from 30 to 130 yellowish brown eggs.

The desert locust is found in North Africa and in Southwest and South Asia, including India. There are two or three generations of locusts per year. The first generation develops in the southern parts of the above regions in autumn and winter, and soon after acquiring wings migrates to the northern part of its range. At this time (between late April and June), during years of mass reproduction, desert locusts may make incursions into the USSR (southern Middle Asia and Transcaucasia) from Afghanistan or Iran. In the northern parts of its range the desert locust reaches sexual maturity and lays its egg pods in the soil; from these pods hatch the larvae of the second, or spring-summer, generation. The second generation develops in the south, where the desert locust begins a new autumn-winter generation.

The food of the desert locust consists of about 400 species of cultivated and wild plants, including woody plants. An infestation of desert locusts on plantings, meadows, and forests may reach catastrophic proportions. It has been established that the mass reproduction of desert locusts is periodic, occurring about every ten to 12 years. The phenomenon is associated with increasing or decreasing precipitation in the permanent habitat.

Methods of control include poisoned bait and treating the plants with attractants containing insecticides.


Shcherbinovskii, N. S. Pustynnaia sarancha-shistotserka. Moscow, 1952.
Tsyplenkov, E. P. Vrednye saranchovye nasekomye v SSSR. Moscow, 1970.


References in periodicals archive ?
Population dynamics of the Central American Locust (CAL), Schistocerca piceifrons, in Yucatan, Mexico from Jan 2008 to Dec 2009.
Some effects of Mermis nigrescens on the haemolymph of Schistocerca gregaria.
The metabolic effect of the insect growth regulator, fenoxycarb, on Schistocerca gregaria last nymphal instar.
Variability in flavonoid compounds of four Tribulus species: does it play a role in their identification by desert locust Schistocerca gregaria?
In well-studied species such as Schistocerca emarginata, gregariousness and aposematism are related to the feeding of nymphs on plants that confer gut-content mediated toxicity to predators (Sword et al.
0% N from percentages of amino acids in resilin from Schistocerca grasshoppers (Andersen 1966; reported in Table 3.
2006) did establish such a connection for Pan-American species of Schistocerca, a member of the Cyrtacanthacridinae, a subfamily related to the melanopline grasshoppers.
The relation of water availability and osmotic gradients to egg development in the locusts Locusta migratoria migratorioides Reiche & Fairmaire and Schistocerca gregaria Forskal.
acridum on feeding and fecal production of adult Central American locusts, Schistocerca piceifrons ssp.
karelini Russia, Tuva Russia 2 Chorthippus karelini bruttius Italy, province Calabria Chorthippus lacustris Greece, Ipiros, Thesprotia Chorthippus ferdinandi Greece, Peloponnesus Stauroderus scalaris GenBank Aeropus sibiricus GenBank Gomphocerippus rufus Italy, province Abruzzi Schistocerca gregaria GenBank Accession Locality of the song Species No.
His first paper on the subject dealt with the experimental effect of different rearing temperatures on chiasma frequency and distribution in Schistocerca gregaria, Locusta migratoria and Stenobothrus (= Chorthippus) parallelus.