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Enhancing Attraction and Aggregation of Desert Locusts for Efficient Harvesting: Push-Pull Approach
  • Joseph Odhiambo Aguk,
  • Collins Kalwale Mweresa,
  • Monica Awuor Ayieko
Joseph Odhiambo Aguk
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Collins Kalwale Mweresa
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology
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Monica Awuor Ayieko
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology
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Desert locusts ( Schistocerca gregaria) pause a significant threat on food security. However, they also serve as a nutrient-rich delicacy in many African and Arab communities where they are traditionally harvested for food and feed during outbreaks. Traditional harvesting methods are inefficient, laborious and time-consuming hence, the need to explore more convenient and efficient techniques. This study assessed preferential selection and feeding behavior of desert locusts to identify trap plants that could attract and aggregate them for easy harvesting. Four trap plants (cowpea, finger millet, sorghum, and amaranth) and four repellent plants (neem, pencil cactus, garlic, and cayenne red pepper) were evaluated through multiple-choice experiments. A complete randomized design (CRD), mature adult, immature adult and hopper stages of desert locust replicated thrice were involved . One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to determine whether treatment effects was significant or not, and mean differences between treatments at p<0.05 were separated using post-hoc Tukey HSD. Cowpea was the most preferred trap plant by the three locust stages, while neem exhibited the most potent repellent effect. Neem as a push plant repelled locusts thereby reducing infestation and damage of cowpeas as a pull plant when both plants were grown in the same pot in a “push-pull” system. However, cowpea attracted large numbers of locusts repelled by neem for harvesting when both plants were grown in separate pots. These findings provide valuable insights on the potential of exploiting trap and repellents to enhance aggregation and harvesting of desert locusts for use as food and feed.
26 Oct 2023Submitted to Applied Research
26 Oct 2023Assigned to Editor
26 Oct 2023Submission Checks Completed
29 Oct 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
05 Feb 20241st Revision Received
05 Feb 2024Submission Checks Completed
05 Feb 2024Assigned to Editor
05 Feb 2024Editorial Decision: Accept