MONROVIA-The Ministry of Agriculture, through its field offices in Bong, Gbarpolu and Nimba counties, has received reports of caterpillars’ invasion in towns and villages affecting food crops and contaminating waterways.
Twelve of Liberia’s 15 counties have experienced such worms’ invasion – a natural and periodic occurrence in Liberia since 2009. Last weekend, the MOA immediately dispatched technicians to assess the invasion’s coverage, determine types of caterpillars and evaluate damages done.
Preliminary findings from the MOA’s technicians recommend immediate intervention of those hit areas. More so, the findings discovered the worms are similar to armyworms and called Achaea which are fast-moving and dangerous to the growth of cocoa, bananas and other food crops.
As this emergency was unforeseen, the ministry is vigorously involved in resource mobilization to source and procure appropriate types of environmentally friendly agrochemicals to curb the worms’ widespread.
With the start of the farming season, the ministry remains focus on working collaboratively with local communities, farming households, governmental agencies and collaborating partners to ensure the invasion is contained.