Grasshoppers bring delicacy, worry farmers

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Kohima, Jun 11 (UNI) The innocuous grasshoppers are a delectable fare for some people and fear to farmers in Kohima.

As evening shadows lengthen they swarm by the street lamps, drawn by its radiance. But their joy is short-lived as people gather in huge numbers to catch them.

A plateful of the fried insects is a treat people love to savour.

Last three weeks saw thousands of gasshoppers invading Kohima and its surroundings, a phenomenon never seen over centuries, maintain elders. They added with worry that the number was increasing.

But farmers are in trepidation. They have a common belief that an invasion of insects or rodents in large numbers is an omen of impending famine. Out of panic, some farmers have already started cultivation.

The grasshoppers are of greenish-brown non-local small variety, but not the locust, experts opined.

Children, with various type of receptacles scout in the morning for grasshoppers. The activity is resumed after they come back from schools. They are joined by men and women in the evening.

Some rich people have even installed high-power lamps, brought from outside the state, to attract the grasshoppers and scoop them for food.

People are also flocking from nearby areas to collect the 'delicacy'.

However, the government departments or the district administration is yet to take any step to inquire into the insect invasion.

UNI AS PL KLC1338

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