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Egypt locusts aren't damaging crops

March 2, 2013 at 4:22 PM

CAIRO, March 2 (UPI) -- Biblical allusions aside, a plague of locust in Egypt won't do any actual harm to crops, the country's agriculture minister said.

The insects are on their annual spring migration and storing fat on their bodies for the journey, meaning they aren't eating any of the plants when the swarms set in, Agriculture Minister Salah Abdel Momen said Friday.

The swarms have been spotted in rural areas around the Red Sea and Momen said the government is deploying what controls it has to try to manage the locust, al-Masry al-Youm said Friday. Momem cautioned farmers against burning tires to keep them away from their crops, saying such efforts only disperse the swarms and make them more difficult to track and control.

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