BEIJING       -      China is preparing to deploy 100,000 ducks to neighbouring Pakistan to help tackle swarms of crop-eating locusts.Chinese agricultural experts say a single duck can eat more than 200 locusts a day and be more effective than pesticides.Pakistan declared an emergency earlier this month saying locust

numbers were the worst in more than two decades.Millions of the insects

have also been devastating crops in parts of East Africa.The Chinese government

announced this week it was sending a team of experts to Pakistan

to develop “targeted

programmes” against the locusts.How a single locust becomes a plague. Somalia

declares emergency

over locust swarms. Drones tested to combat desert locusts.

Lu Lizhi, a senior researcher with the Zhejiang Academy of Agricultural Sciences, described the ducks as “biological weapons”.

He said that while chickens could eat about 70 locusts in one day a duck could devour

more than three times that number.“Ducks like to stay in a group so they are easier to manage than chickens,” he told Chinese

media.Swarms of locusts are threatening to devastate

crops in Pakistan.

A trial involving the ducks will take place in China’s western

Xinjiang province in the coming months, Mr Lu said, according to Bloomberg news agency.

After that they will be sent to Pakistan’s worst-affected areas of Sindh, Balochistan and Punjab provinces. In 2000, China shipped 30,000 ducks from Zhejiang province

to Xinjiang to tackle an infestation