The voracious species of grasshoppers are all alike in their cycle of development. Eggs are laid in late summer in elongated masses or pods inserted in the soil. These pass through the winter, and on hatching in the spring, the young seek food in the immediate area. As they increase in size and food becomes scarce, their migration to other places for food begins. The grasshopper usually molts for 5 times, during a period of 40-60 days, becoming more similar to the adult insect at each developmental stage.
Adult grasshoppers are 1-2 inch long. They are brown to reddish yellow or green in color with prominent jaws, fully developed wings, and short antennae. They have enlarged hind legs and can jump great distances. Immature stages, or nymphs, are similar in appearance to adults, but are smaller and have wing buds instead of wings.
Grasshoppers are insatiable feeders, consuming approximately one-half of their body weight per day. They show a great amount of determinacy in damaging the leaves and stems of plants, by continuously chewing on them. Also, severe infestations may decimate entire fields. In fact, in peak years, grasshopper infestations have been known to destroy or consume entire crop fields.
They make holes in the tissue of the plant as well as the leaves. They also leave dark droppings on the plant leaves. The growth in fruits is underdeveloped.
Severe financial losses can occur when infestations of grasshoppers wipe out crops in a field. Each year they destroy at least 80 million dollars worth of forage crops in USA. Also, it is estimated that grasshoppers consume up to 25 percent of the available forage in the western United States annually. A classic study showed that 6-7 adults per square yard on 10 acres of pasture ate as much as a cow. Damage is most severe when hot, dry weather slows the growth of the forage crop thereby preventing a rapid recovery
Grasshoppers mainly prefer and cause the most damage to small grains, corn, alfalfa, soybeans, cotton, rice, clover, grasses, and tobacco. They may also eat lettuce, carrots, beans, sweet corn, and onions. Grasshoppers are most likely to cause damage in sub-humid, semi-arid areas.
- Argentina Locust Plague: Armageddon, End of Days or Climate Change Disaster?
January 26, 2016, New York Times, Argentina
Fumigators in Argentina have continued their efforts to exterminate the locusts as farmers warned their crops may already be too damaged to be salvaged. “It’s the worst explosion in the last 60 years,” Diego Quiroga, the agriculture agency’s chief of vegetative protection, told the New York Times. “It’s impossible to eradicate; the plague has already established itself,” he said, adding, “We’re just acting to make sure it’s the smallest it can be and does the least damage possible.”
- Grasshoppers Continue Damaging Crops and Move into Texoma Cities
July 15 2014, texoma’s.com, USA
Farmers are welcoming the forecast of possibly a lot of rain and cooler temperatures.
However, as Mechell Dixon reports, they and other Texomans are cursing an insect that’s damaging crops and irritating people. As Kenneth McAlister walked through his son’s sesame field in Iowa Park the plants didn’t catch his attention as much as the grasshoppers.
They’ve damaged much young sesame plant leaves here. And he says this isn’t the first crop he’s planted this spring.
“We’ve actually had two fields of sesame that we planted and had to replant cause they totally took it out,” says McAlister. These annoying insects and their voracious appetites are causing farmers headaches and costing them lots of money on chemicals to kill them off in rural parts of Texoma counties.
Today food scarcity is one of the major issues that the world is facing.About 11.3 % of the world population is hungry. Thus we cannot afford this significant amount of crop damage caused by pests like grasshopper. There is an urgent need for a sustainable solution.
Termirepel™ anti-insect additive, a C Tech Corporation product is the best solution for the prevention and control of insect infestations. Termirepel™ masterbatch can be incorporated in agricultural films, mulches, etc. during polymer processing. It can also be incorporated in silage bags and packaging films to protect the crops in post-harvest stage from pest damage.
Termirepel™ lacquer can be added to paints which can then be applied to fencing, garbage cans etc. It follows 6 tiered mechanism, which is extremely effective on insects like ants, beetles, grasshopper, termites etc. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic and non-hazardous anti-insect additive. It is thermally stable and does not degrade on exposure to heat and sunlight. It does not kill or harm the insect but repels them. It does not volatilize and does not degrade the soil. It is RoHS, RoHS2, REACH, NEA, APVMA compliant and FIFRA exempted.