African armyworm (AAW) outbreaks were reported in several districts in Malawi, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe during February and control operations were launched in most places by the affected farmers with technical and material assistance from the Ministries of Agriculture (DLCO/EA, IRLCO-CSA).
Fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) (FAW), invasions were reported in the southern regions in Tanzania – Ruvuma, Mbeya, the areas bordering neighboring countries in the south during February. An imminent threat of AAW and FAW outbreaks were reported in Uganda during this month, but details were not available at the time this report was compiled. Earlier, FAW was reported damaging maize fields in Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Botswana, but has since subsided in most places where intensive operations were launched.
African Armyworm (Spodoptera exempta) (AAW):
AAW was reported attacking pasture in Matebeleland North Province in Zimbabwe where control was launched. In Malawi, the pest was reported affecting crops in Shire Valley Agriculture Development Division and control was launched by affected farmers. In Mozambique, outbreaks were reported in Manica, Sofala and Tete Provinces where the pest was reported damaging maize, rice and pasture. Affected farmers carried out control with material and technical assistance from the Ministry of Agriculture. In Tanzania, outbreaks were reported in Morogoro and Lindi Regions where affected farmers controlled the pest with material and technical assistance from Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (DLCO-EA, IRLCO-CSA).
Fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) (FAW):
FAW is an armyworm species alien to the region was reported (IRLCO-CSA) destroying maize in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Mozambique and South Africa. By February, the pest was reported in southern Tanzania. The results of assessment missions that were launched by Ministries of agriculture (MoAs) in the affected countries to determine the extent of damage and evaluate the potential impact of the pest on maize production in the affected areas are being awaited.
FORECAST FOR THE NEXT 6 WEEKS:
Armyworm outbreaks are likely to occur in Kenya and northern Tanzania, while isolated outbreaks of the pest might continue to occur in Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Where applicable, CABMFEW famer and community forecasters must remain vigilant and report any trap catches on time to concerned authorities to facilitate rapid interventions (DLCO-EA, IRLCOCSA, OFDA/AELGA).
This forecast comes from and uses material provided by DLCO-EA, IRLCO-CSA and OFDA/AELGA. It was originally issued by USAID’s Emergency Transboundary Outbreak Pest (ETOP) programme and is summarised here by the Armyworm Network (@spodoptera007) hosted by Lancaster University.