The US Is Experiencing A Massive Grasshoppers Infestation

Idaho's NewsChannel 7 reports to expect grasshopper outbreak in Idaho this year.

(emphasis mine) [my comment]

Expect grasshopper outbreak in Idaho this year
by Nishi Gupta
July 19, 2010 at 10:14 PM

[Idaho]

BOISE --
Agriculture experts predict there will be an outbreak of grasshoppers in the state this year with some areas, including the Treasure Valley, reporting more of the insects than usual.

And that means they could be
eating their way through our crops.

No one is really clear why there are so many grasshoppers right now. One theory is
they're popping up in parts that haven't really been treated by insecticide before.

Mary Rohlfing says the insects are starting to show up on her Ada County farm.

"From our own observations
we're seeing a lot more of them. Right now they're kind of small, they're only an inch or so long. But next month is probably going to be bit of a challenge," said Rohlfing.

Because of
the crop damage they cause, controlling grasshoppers is a priority for the state.

Agricultural workers have been busier than usual visiting property owners who complain of seeing too many of the insects.

Threats are being reported in several counties: from northern Idaho to the southeast, and now even in Ada and Elmore Counties.

"Right now it' s atypical for Elmore county. We have not had this many calls from Elmore for about 3 or 4 years. Ada county -- it's not typical because we're getting more calls this year south of the freeway in Ada county. We didn't expect that many calls this year," said Dick Lawson of the Idaho Department of Agriculture.

Rapid City Journal reports about Heavy outbreak of grasshoppers at work on West River fields.

Heavy outbreak of grasshoppers at work on West River fields
Jomay Steen, Journal staff Posted: Tuesday, July 20, 2010 6:00 am


[South Dakota]


Every morning Doug Hlavka surveys
the damage that a newly hatched plague of grasshoppers has set upon his cornfield and pastures.

“This is the worst infestation that I' ve ever seen,” Hlavka said.

The eastern Meade County rancher had contracted to have his field sprayed Monday, but a rainstorm rolled through the area postponing any field work until later.

Hlavka, 56, noticed the first hatchings about two weeks ago.
The hoppers quickly moved into his pastures and fields to begin their ravenous work, he said.

“I lost 40 acres of alfalfa that I didn' t cut. I had 80 acres of corn that they' re eating up real fast. I' ve sprayed around its edges, but I' m waiting for an airplane to spray it,” he said.

His wife, Val, lost her flower and vegetable gardens to the insects. He estimates that in certain areas on his ranch,
there are 30 grasshoppers resting on each square foot of land. They have covered the sides of his home, outbuildings and fence posts.

“My mother' s 84, and she says they' re the worst she' s ever seen,” Hlavka said.

David Heck, Lawrence County Invasive Species coordinator, said
grasshoppers have been increasing their populations successively each cycle in Lawrence County for the past three years. They started hatching about three weeks ago, Heck said.

“Last year was the worst since I' ve been here since 2000,” Heck said. “It' s looking the same for this year.”

They are seeing
more grasshoppers where they don' t typically range such as the foothills of the Black Hills and Spearfish. The grasshoppers are spread throughout the county' s plains areas including St. Onge as well as the Butte and Wyoming borders.

“I' ve been hearing the grasshopper populations are bad in Butte County,” he said.


“There' s a lot of forage and feed for the grasshoppers to feed on right now,” Guffey said. There haven' t been a lot of complaints, but there are definitely grasshoppers out there, he said.

In Pennington County,
grasshoppers have moved in off the range and are getting into the croplands. The Wall area has been the first to report grasshoppers, he said.

Record Times reports that Grasshopper levels at all-time high.

Grasshopper levels at all-time high
Posted: Wednesday, Jul 14th, 2010
BY: Amanda Fry, Staff Writer

[Wyoming]

Throughout the Wyoming and several other western states, grasshopper populations are at an all time high, and the problem could linger in coming years, according to Larry Yost of the Platte County Weed and Pest Department.

Yost said the department recently sprayed 324,000 acres of land in the County in a recent program for landowners to try and prevent heavy grasshopper outbreaks on their land.

With the help of federal grants, landowners were able to spray a pesticide, Dimilin 2L, on their land for $1.25 per acre, and Yost said the effects of the chemical will be seen in coming days.

Yost emphasized that the chemical will not be effective until approximately 14 days after application.

On average, Yost said
grasshopper levels range from 40 to 60 insects per square foot, with higher concentrations seeing from 100 to 200 per square foot. Yost said in one area, however, there was an average of 2,000 grasshoppers per square foot, although this is not a typical situation.

“I' d never seen anything like that,” Yost said. He noted that in 1995, the highest level of grasshoppers he recorded was near Guernsey, with 140 per square foot.

Part of the high grasshopper population, Yost said, is due to the fact that the insects' population is cyclic. He said the current grasshopper boom falls approximately 70 years from the “Dirty Thirties,” a period of time in the late 1930' s and early 1940' s, when grasshoppers plagued the area.

Yost said while grasshopper peaks such as this last approximately 3 years, they can last up to 5 years, or even longer. He also noted that
the situation surrounding the current grasshopper population is not typical.

Cass-news reports that Grasshoppers starting to ruin crops, gardens.

Grasshoppers starting to ruin crops, gardens
Wednesday, Jul 14, 2010 - 04:28:07 pm CDT

[Nebraska]

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) —
Grasshoppers are already starting to damage yards and gardens in parts of Nebraska, so homeowners should watch out for signs of the hungry insects.

Hernando Today reports that grasshopper infestation gives local farmers anxiety.

Grasshopper infestation gives local farmers anxiety
By HAYLEY MATHIS

[Florida]

A recent infestation of American grasshoppers is creating a problem for local farmers.

Stacey Strickland,
county extension director and agriculture agent, said he is trying to help farmers maintain their crops with the recent grasshopper infestation that has mostly taken place off Power Line Road near State Road 50 heading east.

Strickland said
the grasshoppers have swarmed in the thousands and are eating hay and other crops.

Federal Inaction Causes Epic Grasshopper Outbreaks

I explained about the looming Grasshopper disaster two months ago.

In 1931, grasshopper swarms were reported to be so thick that they blocked out the sun. These swarming grasshoppers ate everything fenceposts, clothing hanging on clotheslines, and even the paint off buildings. Fields were left devastated, totally stripped of all vegetation.

Timing of Epic grasshopper outbreaks is not a coincidence

Notice the timing of the last truly epic grasshopper infestation: 1931, right in the middle of the great depression. THIS IS NOT AN ACCIDENT. During economic downturns, farmers and governments cut corners in their preventative spending, allowing pest infestations to reach levels they normally never could. This inaction is the true cause behind spectacular pest outbreaks.

A search of Google archive news for Grasshoppers, confirms the theory. The story below is from 1931.

US Has No Funds For War On Grasshoppers In Mid-West (1931)

U.S. Has No Funds For War On Grasshoppers In Mid-West
Although Serious Damage Is Reported, Agriculture Department Official Says Appropriation Is For Research Only
The Sun - Jul 25, 1931

The Agriculture Department repeated today that it had no funds with which to undertake the eradication of grasshoppers the heavily infested States pf Nebraska and South Dakota.

Is News of Grasshopper Infestation being suppressed?

I found the story below through google news on Monday. However, it has now disappeared from Google news (See Google news results for "Idaho Farmers Concerned Over Grasshoppers").

KIVI-TV TODAY'S 6 NEWS reports that Idaho Farmers Concerned Over Grasshoppers

Idaho Farmers Concerned Over Grasshoppers

"Grasshoppers! Everywhere!" That's the cry we are starting to hear at our Today's Channel 6 newsroom Assignment desk….

Viewers calling in saying
it's getting bad out there

So we called the USDA and -- get this --
they say they haven't seen a grasshopper infestation this large since the late 90's!

My reaction: As expected, the US is experiencing a massive Grasshoppers infestation. Crop damage is inevitable. Mainstream media is completely ignoring this story.

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3 Responses to The US Is Experiencing A Massive Grasshoppers Infestation

  1. Olumo says:

    Okay Eric, You got this one right. But the level of the food crisis you foretold hasn't occurred yet. I have been monitoring your site for 5 months now.
    Whatsup with your farm in Russia. Hope the heat wave hasn't destroyed them yet.
    From my point of view, I think it would take another year or two to witness your kind of food crisis

  2. sharonsj says:

    Just wondering if the upsurge in grasshoppers has anything to do with global warming?

    I don't know about food shortages but we certainly have food inflation. Just because the supermarkets have some things on sale doesn't mean that general prices have gone down. The signals are very mixed. Bad processed and packaged stuff may be discounted, but the food that is good for you like fresh fruits and vegetables, is out of sight.

  3. Olumo says:

    Eric,
    Is there any form of food shortage in the US?

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