02 September 1998
Chinese farmers fight locusts with chickens

OFFICIALS and farmers in north-west China are stepping up plans to combat locusts with chickens.

Some 100,000 chickens were used to control a plague of the insects this year. Counties around Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang region, now plan to raise 200,000 to fight the locust menace.

The chickens are trained to hunt in the grasslands at the sound of a whistle. Farmers report that chickens fed on protein-rich locusts grow fat and fetch a good price.

  • The Guardian 02/09/98 page 11 (News in Brief)
  • The Daily Telegraph 02/09/98 page 13