Salah Moawad, head of the Agriculture Ministry’s services and follow-up sector, said the ministry has received a report from the Cairo Airport Authority that there are swarms of locusts on Cairo International Airport’s runways.
He added that he and two teams have examined the situation firsthand in order to prevent any delays to flights.
In statements to Al-Masry Al-Youm, Moawad added that the swarms reached the airport after being chased out of other locations, adding that they were currently being sprayed with pesticides.
Swarms of locusts invaded southern Egypt in January, with news reports saying crops in Upper Egypt were affected. News reports on Saturday said the swarms have also appeared in Cairo.
Egypt has been affected by locust swarms before, notably in 1954, when red locusts ate nearly 250,000 tons of corn in Egypt and North Africa.
Since then, locust swarms from the Arabian Peninsula have periodically attacked Egypt, including in 1968, 2004, 2007 and 2011, but without resulting in major crop damage.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm