Tuesday, July 16, 2024
North East

Mizoram reports Fall ArmyWorm outbreak, 7 districts affected

Aizawl, May 19: Mizoram reported a fresh outbreak of Fall ArmyWorm (FAW), a pest that damaged maize cultivations in several parts of the state, an official said on Thursday.
Director of Agriculture Department James Lalsiamliana told PTI that a report about the outbreak was received from some parts of the state on May 13.
Following that, agriculture officers in all districts were alerted to take steps to prevent the outbreak, he said.
The outbreak has affected 89 villages in seven districts, Lalsiamliana said.
FAW was detected in more than 490 hectare of land across the state where maize is cultivated, he said.
Mizoram has 11 districts and detailed information from Khawzawl and Siaha districts is awaited. Negligible incidence of FAW was also reported from Serchhip and Hnahthial districts, the official said.
Lunglei and Mamit districts are the worst hit, he said.
While FAW was detected in 287 hectare of land in 22 villages of Lunglei, it was found in 93.6 hectare of land in 29 villages in Mamit district, he said.
In Aizawl district, FAW was found in 38.4 hectares of land, affecting 15 villages, he said.
FAW outbreak was first detected in the state in 2019, and a recurrence has happened every year since then during the summers, Lalsiamliana said.
The government is taking steps to contain the outbreak by providing pesticides and insecticides to farmers, he said.
Farmers have been instructed to use soap solutions, a concoction of salt and red pepper and also ash to kill the pest, he said.
Noting that FAW has a bleak chance of survival during the monsoon, Lalsiamliana hoped that the outbreak would be contained soon.
In 2019, Fall ArmyWorm damaged crops worth over Rs 20 crore. (PTI)