Agriculture

Panic at caterpillars destroy Iganga potato gardens

The caterpillar attacks potato crops and leads to reduced yields. File photo.



IGANGA–Farmers in Nakalama, Bulamagi,Makutu, Nakigo and Nawandala sub-counties in Iganga district are counting loses after their sweet potato gardens were destroyed by marauding caterpillars which invaded the area early this month.

The district production officer, Joseph Dhikusooka, has confirmed the caterpillar invasion and blamed it on the short dry spells.

Abdu Lwabi, one of the affected farmers, said the pests started by forming a layer on the plant.

James lsiko, a resident of Nakalama village, said several plantations of sweet pototoes have been destroyed.

“We lack pesticides and if government does not intervene, we are most likely to face food shortage,“ he said.
Mubarak Salumin, a resident of Nakalama sub-county, said most villages were invaded by the pests and asked the district to step up its efforts to combat the pests in the sub-county.

A couple of months ago, farmers in Eastern Uganda suffered when the fall army worm attacked maize gardens leaving them counting losses. The attack compelled the Agriculture ministry to dispatch Agriculture extension workers to teach farmers about measures of countering the deadly pest.

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