Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Snails destroy more than 100 acres of paddy crops in Mon State

Wednesday, 31 August 2011 23:04 Kun Chan

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – A large, invasive species of snail has destroyed rice crops around seven villages in Chaungzon Township in Mon State, according to local farmers.

Since July, the snails have attacked fields in the seaside villages of Kanyaw, Boenakkyi, Downyak, Kawmupon, Selpalar, Hinthakyun and Natmhaw.

Mon State Chief Minister U Ohn Myint visited Kawmupon village last week to inspect the villagers’ effort to combat the snail, according to the state-run newspaper New Light of Myanmar.

He told the farmers to prevent the outbreak of snails from spreading to other paddy fields, the newspaper said, and suggested that the farmers replace the spoiled rice crops with a second crop of new rice plants.

In Mon State, rainy season rice crops are grown from early June to late July, according to a retired township agricultural official.

Farmers said the snails lay a cluster of eggs on rice plants or grasses and their birth rate is very high, making it difficult for farmers to control the plague of snails.

“We have not seen these snails before. They appeared this year. They are different than the usual farm snails, and they are very big. The weight of a snail is about 0.4 kg,” a farmer in Downyak village told Mizzima.

An assistant professor of botany at Rangoon University said in the weekly The Voice Journal on August 29 that the snail was the “Golden Apple Snail,” and it was similar to regular Burmese farm snails.

A retired township agricultural official told Mizzima, “The snails are not a Burmese species. Burmese farm snails also eat duckweeds and rice plants, but they are not as dangerous as these snails. These snails really like rice plants.”

Leave a Reply