Grasshoppers on the West Mesa show up on weather radar
Grasshoppers are so abundant on the West Mesa this week that they are showing up on National Weather Service radar.
At least, grasshoppers are the most likely explanation for “weird radar echoes” that have shown up the last three nights, said Jason Frazier, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Albuquerque.
“This is the most logical expanation we have come up with,” Frazier said Friday. “We knew pretty quickly it wasn’t rain.”
Radar images posted on the agency’s website Thursday night show clusters of grasshoppers in areas west of Albuquerque and Rio Rancho and north of Interstate 40.
Unusually large number of grasshoppers have appeared in the Albuquerque metro area, prompting complaints from property owners to city and county officials.
The Bernalillo County Cooperative Extension Service said early this month that favorable conditions for grasshoppers have led to a population explosion this year.
The insects aren’t dangerous but can defoliate trees, shrubs and gardens, officials said.