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Locust plague descends on Madagascar capital... and becomes dinner for some

Published on Aug 29, 2014 12:26 AM
A swarm of locusts invades the centre of Madagascar's capital Antananarivo on August 28, 2014. Such swarms have multiplied uncontrollably in recent years, because of government inaction following a coup. The island's hot and humid climate serves as an ideal breeding ground.  -- PHOTO: AFP 

ANTANANARIVO (AFP) - A thick grey swarm of locusts engulfed Madagascar's capital on Thursday, sending children scuttling and causing florists to burn tyres in panic.

A bank of ravenous insects clouded the sky over Antananarivo, with countless thousands raining down dead on to the streets.

"We are going to give them to the chickens to eat, if the chickens don't die, we'll eat them," said 13-year-old Anthoni Razafimahatratra, enthusiastically scooping handfuls of insects into a plastic bag.

Locust swarms are common on this Indian Ocean island, with the hot and humid climate serving as an ideal breeding ground.

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