San San Win, Aye Tun, Min Aung, San San Lwin, Aye Aye Mya, San San New, Swe Swe Oo,Khin Khin Pyone, Kathy Aye, Cho Cho San, Department of Agriculture, Myanmar and
K.L. Heong, International Rice Research Institute, Los Baños, Philippines
Myanmar is blessed with rich soils and biodiversity that can contribute to sustainable rice intensification through better management of the ecosystem services. Early exploration showed that the arthropod biodiversity is especially rich and worth conserving. Insecticide use although at a minimum is still much misused with spraying of the wrong chemicals for the wrong pest. For instance farmers are often encouraged to practice prophylactic spraying of organophosphates. A recent survey showed that most insecticides used by farmers are either banned or obsolete in developing countries. Of particular concern are the strong attitudes of farmers towards using insecticides. In Vietnam farmers’ insecticide use were found to have doubtful productivity gains. Given the poor equipment that Myanmar farmers have and poor knowledge, there is potential threat of widespread misuse when Myanmar’s economy opens up in the next few years. Rice production in Myanmar for the moment is quite free from pest and disease problems and rarely suffers from planthopper outbreaks and whenever they did they had been closely associated with heavy insecticide applications. Since BPH outbreaks are caused by disruptions to ecosystem services, the need to retain minimal insecticide application in Myanmar in order to prevent outbreaks is of importance.
Ecological engineering (EE) concepts were introduced into Myanmar to develop sustainable pest management strategies in July 2011 . EE involves both increased biodiversity through using plants on the bunds and conserving biodiversity through reducing unnecessary insecticide usage. In 2012 we initiated experimental fields in Nay Pyi Daw and in Hmawbi to compare ecosystem services in EE fields and production fields. The EE fields (1.2 ha each) had no insecticide sprays and were surrounded with sunflowers and other nectar rich flowering plants grown on the bunds. The production fields received 2 prophylactic sprays of dimethoate on 30 and 60 days after transplanting and the bunds were not populated.
Arthropods were sampled twice using the D Vac suction sampling device and net sweeps. This report discusses the biodiversity analyses of the cumulative net sweep data. All arthropods sampled were grouped into functional groups, herbivores, predators, parasitoids and detritivores. Figure 1 shows the proportions of individuals in each functional group. Predators and parasitoids were proportionately higher in the EE fields in both sites.