Where are the Lark's songs?

TN News

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The summer flowers are blooming, so there are many butterflies with magnificent colors all along our country lanes. The children love white butterflies the most. They chase them with a net in hand, and certainly, with cheerful smiles on their faces. Regrettably, what I have just told you about are scenes from the past.

The green paddy field, the transparent waterways, the soft breeze... all remain, but you find virtually no fish, no birdsongs, even no wild flowers on the meadow. The pastoral afternoon is completely different from what it used to be.

If Ralph Vaughan Williams were alive, he would cry for the change in his masterpiece's melody - "The Lark Ascending." The biodiversity on farms is being affected heavily because of the overuse of insecticides, herbicides and fungicides.

Some researches have proved that insecticides, herbicides and fungicides are a double-edged sword. They help farmers control pests, weeds and diseases as a short-term solution, but they are toxic to natural enemies of insects and pests, such as snakes, fish, birds, spiders and beetles.

The decrease in number of useful predators creates good conditions for the increase in number of pests on the paddy field.

In other words, "more pesticides meant more pests," said Jules Pretty in his book, "Agriculture - Reconnecting People, Land and Nature."

In the past, we had cultivated the land without using too much fertilizer, pesticides, or we even used none of them. The agricultural productivity was certainly lower than now, but we still received other benefits such as the saved-money from cutting down on using of inorganic fertilizers and buying pesticides - and the corresponding medical care's fees. Most importantly, we preserved biological diversity on the farms.

Biodiversity is totally strange to many farmers in rural areas. In their attempt to increase agricultural productivity, they are narrowing many irrigation canals and filling up many lakes for rice cultivation.

The last gleam of hope of many creatures on the field disappears. We need to protect the lakes on our fields to ensure that all species have the right to exist.

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