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International Journal of Biodiversity
Volume 2014, Article ID 947683, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/947683
Research Article

Crop Depredation by Birds in Deccan Plateau, India

1Department of Sustainable Development, Environmental Science and Engineering, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Teknikringen 76, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden
2Environment Service Scheme (ESS), Centre for Environment Education (CEE), Pune 411 007, India
3IBA-IBCN, Bombay Natural History Society, Mumbai 400023, India

Received 12 May 2014; Revised 11 August 2014; Accepted 13 August 2014; Published 3 September 2014

Academic Editor: Alexandre Sebbenn

Copyright © 2014 Manoj Ashokrao Kale et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Extent of crop depredation in agricultural fields of groundnut, pearl millet, peas, sorghum and sunflower was assessed in Pune, Akola and Amravati, the three productive districts of Maharashtra, India. The study included interviews with the farmers, identification of the bird species responsible for the crop depredation and actual field assessment of damage. The problem of crop depredation is severe for the crops mostly during harvesting season. Most farmers were not satisfied with the conventional bird repelling techniques. A maximum depredation was observed by Sorghum crops by house sparrows Passer domesticus, baya weavers Ploceus philippinus, and rose-ringed parakeets Psittacula krameri, accounting to 52% of the total damage. Blue rock pigeons Columba livia damaged 42% of the peas crop (chick peas and pigeon peas), while house sparrows and baya weaver damaged the groundnut crop by 26% in the sampling plots. House sparrow Passer domesticus and baya weaver Ploceus philippinus damaged the groundnut crop in the sampling plots just after the sowing period. The sustainable solution for reducing crop depredation is a need for the farmers and also such techniques will help avoid direct or indirect effects of use of lethal bird control techniques on bird species.