|Making noise: Farmers in Giang Thành District try to chase mice from a rice field by beating two pot lids together. — VNA/VNS Photo|
KIÊN GIANG – Hundreds of hectares of rice have been destroyed by mice, with as much as 90 per cent damaged in some fields, in Kiên Giang Province’s Giang Thành District.
Phạm Hoà Bình, who grows 2ha of summer-autumn rice in Tân Khánh Hoà Commune’s Tân Khánh Hamlet, said more than 90 per cent of her rice fields had been lost, even after setting out poisonous baits and destroying underground areas where mice are living.
She had also tried to create loud noises by beating together two pot lids to scare the mice.
Her losses totalled VNĐ30 million (US$1,300), which included costs of rice seeds, fertilisers and pesticides for growing the summer-autumn rice crop.
Nguyễn Văn Đậm in Vĩnh Điều Commune said mice had destroyed half of his 6-ha rice fields, resulting in a very low yield.
“After my family harvested the field, farmers living nearby came to my fields and caught nearly one tonne of mice,” he said.
Many farmers in the district had to abandon their rice fields because of the mice infestation.
Farmers in Giang Thành District have grown 15,800 ha of early summer-autumn rice and 20,970ha of the summer-autumn rice, according to the district’s Plant Cultivation and Protection Station.
Danh Sal, head of the district’s Plant Cultivation and Protection Station, said mice had destroyed 520 ha of summer-autumn rice in the district.
Sal said the summer-autumn rice had been sown at different times this year, resulting in scattered harvests. Farmers usually protect their fields when they start sowing by putting out mouse traps or using other measures.
Sal said that farmers were told not to use electric mouse traps to catch mice, but they continued to do so.
In June, a 32-year-old farmer in Vĩnh Phi Commune was electrocuted after his foot was caught in the electric trap that he had placed in his field. –VNS