Use of perching method sees a gradual rise among the farmers of the district as they are opting for environment-friendly ways to check harmful pests.
In the perching method, bamboo poles and branches of trees are set on crop fields at regular intervals so that pest-eating birds can sit there.
During a recent visit to the villages, this correspondent found birds sitting on braches set on crops fields.
Abdul Karim, a farmer of Kalapara upazila's Tiakhali village, told this correspondent that he had been getting the desired results since he set 10 branches on his one-acre land right after planting seeds about two months ago.
“The process is easy and cheap. Bug-eating birds like magpie, martin, owl, sparrow, and parakeet sit on the branches and eat different types of pests, especially grasshopper,” he went on.
Besides helping to produce chemical-free healthy food crops, the perching method reduces the farmers' production cost as they do not have to spend money for using chemical pesticides.
Rahmat Mia of Nilganj village, said, “Earlier we used different types of insecticides to keep pests off our crop land but now we are using the environment-friendly method. The process hardly costs anything.”
Echoing 50-year-old Rahmat, farmer Abul Kalam of Jainti village in Patuakhali Sadar upazila, said, “The chemicals we used earlier were expensive.”
Various chemicals that were earlier in use to control pests cost an average Tk 1,500 per acre, said Kalapara Upazila Agriculture Extension Officer Abdul Mannan.
“Local farmers in the district are taking interest in the environment-friendly method. About 60 percent of the farmers in the area are using the method. We are working to bring the rest under the practice,” he said.