ILOILO CITY, Sept. 29 - The Department of Agriculture (DA) here said that the reports of different pest and harmful insect infestations in Western Visayas may be attributed to Climate Change.
DA regional director Larry Nacionales said that sudden changes in weather patterns have significantly altered the cycle and patterns of insects and agriculture.
He pointed that the attacks and infestation of rice and plant pests all over the region have been very erratic and often disastrous to farmers.
Director Nacionales said that the feeding and growth cycle of most pests have changed through the years due to sudden changes in humidity, rain patterns, and even heat waves.
He explained that pests, as well as most insects are always attuned to the movement of the weather in determining when to breed, eat and migrate.
Climate Change, however, forces these insects to adapt to new cycles and often surprises farmers if they suddenly emerge in seasons when they are not expected.
They no longer follow their usual cycle which farmers have been monitoring like they used to, he said.
Nacionales said that most crops, especially rice are planted in season when pests are less likely to attack. This is the reason why they plant rice and crops in certain time of the year, so as to avoid infestations.
Climate Change, however, has caught farmers off-guard since the pests have attacked sooner than expected.
Recently, the DA has recorded the attacks of rice black bug, army worms, brown plant hoppers and green plant hoppers since January.
These pests have been monitored in various provinces in Western Visayas and have caused virus, stunted growths, decreased crop productions, lost of livelihood, among others.
DA is currently working with experts on how to treat these pests effectively. (PNA) AJP/ LPCarnaje