Innovates method to trap rats on the fruit tree and safeguard the yield
“I lost 4-5 quintal areca nuts and 4000-5000 tender coconut water. It was all because of rats! It was the major problem in my farm! Rat used to spoil fruits on coconut and areca nut trees. It is said that rats should not be killed and it cannot be biologically controlled as the reproduction is very fast. There used to be a constant threat to yield loss due to rats,” says Mr. S.R. Arun Kumar, a progressive farmer from Tumkur District, Karnataka. “I observed once the rat climbs the tree, it keeps jumping from one tree to another. Rat traps available in the market were not effective if kept on the ground instead it was crucial to keep the trap on the tree.”
However, to place the rat trap on every coconut and areca nut tree was difficult rather impossible. To solve the problem Mr. Arun Kumar developed a method. “During my school days, I had seen school authorities hosting the flag. The same principle of moving the flag up and down I used for crafting the method to place the rat trap on the tree. I took a long plastic rope, double the height of the tree. Next I tied an old bamboo basket at four corners with binding wire. All the four binding wires are connected to other end of the plastic rope and the other end with the stone. The basket is placed on a coconut frond that can be pulled up or down. Inside the basket a rat trap is tied with the binding wires because if the trap is kept untied in the basked then rat may drag the trap itself. A desiccated coconut piece is attached to the trap. Rats get attracted to desiccated coconut and they get locked inside the trap,” he elaborates.
It is the cost effective method of controlling rats in the farm. One trap is sufficient for 40 trees. “I have kept 25 traps in 7acres farm. The trapped rats die hence must be buried in the soil meticulously to put off the disease spread,” he adds. It is a simple method and every farmer must use it to solve the rat problem and safeguard the yield. The same method can be used for all fruit plants such as pomegranate, sapota, cocoa and so on.
Mr. Arun Kumar completed BSc in 1999. Soon after he started farming and feels proud to be a fulltime farmer. He has planned the plantation on his 9.5 acres farm in very systematic manner. 7acres farm has rich plantation of 400 coconut and 2000 areca nut trees while vanilla, pepper and cocoa are grown as intercrops. Entire farm is fenced by silver oak, teak and gliricidia trees.
Remaining 2.5acre has hebbevu plants grown at distance of 12×12. Red sandal, agarwood, sapota and almost all fruit plants are planted as intercrops with hebbevu. “It looks like forest. I am also cultivating climbers of pumpkins and others in different method. I also cultivate ragi, hyacinth, uchellu (Guizotia Abyssinica), paddy and vegetables,” he adds. Most important in complete farm exclusively organic farming is practiced. “We prepare vermicompost, jeevaamrutha and biodigester (green waste in the farm is decomposed to make decoction which is sprayed through drip on the plant. It is works as growth tonic for the plants).” Occasionally Mr. Arun Kumar visits other villages/individual farmer’s farm as resource person for organic and natural farming practices.
He is working on some new traps that would ensure the rat gets caught. “I am also trying to develop a device that indicates whether the rat is trapped or not without getting the basket down as presently to check if rat is trapped or not I have to bring the basket down,” he shares.
Mr. Arun Kumar has been felicitated with many awards for his innovative method to trap the rats. Farmers suffer a lot due to the rats. He concludes saying, “I suffered huge losses due to rats so I can understand the pain of fellow farmers. My farm is always open for a free demonstration and all the help possible.”
Mr. S.R. Arun Kumar
S/o H.D. Ramakrishnaiah, Shettikere, Chikkanaikanahalli Taluk, Tumkur District, Karnataka-572226
Phone: 08133-269564, 09900824420