Current situation

Updated: 21 Mar 2021


The locust population increased slightly over much of inland NSW during January and February 2021. High numbers of adults up to medium-density swarm were detected in the Lake Cargelligo and Ivanhoe districts. Numerous-density nymphs were identified and reported in the north west of NSW. Air surveillance was conducted in the Moree district to get a handle on the extent of hatching and nymph activity.  While no aerial targets were identified, many ground spraying targets were identified, and control was conducted by the affected land holders.

Frequent trough activities in the past month may have facilitated regular short-distance nocturnal migrations of fledging locusts in NSW. The most notable of this being the frontal systems of mid March which resulted in reports coming in from the central west of NSW and an increase in reports of locusts arriving in parts of the south-eastern Riverina are expected.

The only positive of these movements/arrivals is that any eggs laid by them are likely to go into diapause and over-winter, hatching out next October so we are unlikely to have any significant autumn generation in those areas as a result of any fly-ins.

February rainfall was generally average over inland eastern Australia. It was below to very much below average in the south western part of NSW (west of Tibooburra-Wilcannia-Ivanhoe-Hay-Deniliquin), but above to very much above average in the Central West Slopes and Plains and the north-eastern part of Upper Western NSW. The mild weather and rainfall pattern suggest increased locust activity across NSW for established local locust populations during autumn.

Landholders and Local Lands Services staff will continue to monitor these areas over the coming months.

Landholders that suspect or are aware of any locust activity on their land should contact their Local Lands Services office on 1300 795 299.

Primary producers

Landholders are responsible for reporting locusts and the control of locusts on their land. If locust populations reach agreed treatment criteria, Local Lands Services will supply ratepayers with chemical to treat locusts.

Key contacts

Reporting emergenciesTelephone
Australian Plague Locust Commission1800 635 962
Local Land Services (LLS)1300 795 299