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I'm scared to ask but why have I never heard about locust plagues in the USA?



North America used to have massive locust swarms back in the 19th century. But...

> The Rocky Mountain locust ranged through the western half of the United States and some western portions of Canada. Sightings often placed their swarms in numbers far larger than any other locust species, with one famous sighting in 1875 estimated at 198,000 square miles (510,000 km2) in size (greater than the area of California), weighing 27.5 million tons and consisting of some 12.5 trillion insects.

> Less than 30 years later, the species was apparently extinct. The last recorded sighting of a live specimen was in 1902 in southern Canada.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocky_Mountain_locust


I find it fascinating that we dont know how they became extinct. I had originally thought it was simply habitat destruction but that hasn't really be proven at all.


Indeed, some thought it was simply farmers plowing fields or stock grazing, but their origin point were mountain valleys so it doesn't seem their demise would have been as rapid as it actually was.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqyCO1eVC68&t=26m38s


There's a reason that the Utah state bird is Larus californicus, the California seagull, and a huge statue of it graces Salt Lake City's Temple Square.

https://www.standard.net/news/local/not-since-the-bingeing-p...

https://onlinelibrary.utah.gov/research/utah_symbols/bird.ht...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seagull_Monument


From Wikipedia[0]:

> North America is currently the only continent besides Antarctica without a native locust species.

[0] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Locust


Because we accidentally exterminated the Rocky Mountain locusts[0].

[0] Minute Earth - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQ804ztWPNs


We don’t have locusts but down here in the southeast US we have cicadas every dozen or so years.


In fact Cicadas emerge on 7, 13 and 17 year periods.

The theory for this 'prime number' periodic cycle is quite interesting: https://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2001/11/27/421251.ht...


Thank you, that is fascinating, as is the postscript.




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