Grasshopper swarm to be worst in 30 years

The forecasted grasshopper, Camnula pellucida, invasion could put at risk 140,00 acres and make for one fo teh worst outbreaks in 30 years.  The Oregonian reports

“Hungry grasshoppers are starting to hatch in Arizona and New Mexico and could make 2010 the worst grasshopper year since the mid-1980s — consuming huge swaths of grasslands and crops, said U.S. Department of Agriculture expert Charles Brown. The anticipated glut results from natural population cycles and widespread drought conditions that grasshoppers thrive under.”

“Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska and the Dakotas are forecast to feel the brunt, with lesser clouds of grasshoppers expected across Oregon, Washington, Texas, Utah, Colorado and Nevada, said Brown, who oversees the USDA’s national grasshopper suppression program. ..”

“Grasshoppers munched their way across tens of thousands of acres of Harney County in 2009, and this summer’s devastation could double to 140,000 acres in the county, entomologists said. Grasshopper activity probably will be centered on and around the million-acre-plus Roaring Springs Ranch south of Frenchglen, Frenchglen  itself and ranchland north of the 187,000-acre Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

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