SUA develops anti-rodent technology using cat’s urine

03Nov 2018
Gerald Kitabu
MOROGORO
The Guardian
SUA develops anti-rodent technology using cat’s urine

FARMERS whose fields are prone to rodent attacks can now smile following the development of a new technology that controls rodents.

Rats cause devastating damage to maize fields in some parts of the country. Photo: File

The technology has been developed by Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro region.

 

A research fellow at the university, Dr. Georgies Mgode, said the university developed the technology using cat urine to prevent damage caused by rodents to crops while still in field and in storage facilities.

“We developed the technology based on the concept that rodents are always afraid of a cat. We also know that some people may like the benefits of a cat but not the cat itself,” he said.

He said after realizing that animals use urine to mark their territories, they thought of using cat’s urine as a tool to control rodents on crops.

The researcher said they had already extracted a compound from the cat’s urine and realized that the urine had active ingredients for a rodent to feel the presence of a cat whenever the urine was placed.

“This makes rodents not to attack crops, be it in the field or in storage facilities,” he said.

He said the technology can also be applied in the house as rats are also said to cause damage to electrical wires, besides causing various diseases.

According to Mgode, the approach of a trap barrier system is also used in controlling rodents in the field and residential houses.

“It is an approach where farmers’ plants in a ten square metre farm around which a wall is constructed as a barrier to prevent rodents from getting on to the farm,” the researcher said.

He said a hole is also made leading the rodent to a trap where it is trapped.

“This makes farmers easily collect rodents and kill them, thereby decreasing their population in the area, allowing farmers to plant the remaining field,” he said.

The researcher commended the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) for supporting the technology initiative which will improve farmers’ harvests.

Reached for comment on the new technology, retired agricultural research officer from the Ministry of Agriculture Protas Tesha said the cat urine technology will help millions of farmers in rain-fed regions to easily get rid of rodents.

Tesha, a former officer in charge of a rodent control centre in Morogoro region, said farmers face rodent threat challenges in many regions, thereby threatening agricultural development.

“Rodents reproduce and multiply faster during the rainy season than during the dry season due to abundant food supply and good hiding areas,” he said.

According to him, most susceptible areas where rodents multiply fast include Morogoro, Rufiji, Bagamoyo Lindi, Mtwara, and Tanga.

In these areas, he said farmers are still unaware of the hazards rodents cause to their crops, hence little effort is being made to smoke them out.

He said in some areas rats known as scientifically as Mastomys were found to have a high reproduction system, breeding up to 18 newborns in 21 days.

He said the ministry was however working in close collaboration with farmers to control the rats.

The ex-agricultural research officer said in most rodent-infested areas farmers apply poison, which is also dangerous to human health.

“Farmers need not wait for the government to do everything for them. Instead they should embark on clearing their farms to control the rats,” he said.

Farmers in the five food basket regions in the country say rodents have become a huge problem in recent years.

In Morogoro region, rice and maize farmers are struggling to control rodents in their fields, which have been badly affected by rodent infestation.

“We use box traps or toxic baits to control the rats, but this strategy has never completely eliminated them,” said farmers in Misufini and Dibamba villages in Mvomero district, Morogoro regon.

Farmers in Iringa region are not spared from rodent infestation. They said the menace of infestation begins soon after planting through to harvesting.

“Rodents normally dig planted seeds from underground, leaving the field empty without the seeds, forcing farmers to plant again the seeds,” they said.

After planting the seeds, farmers are forced to guard their fields by using traps and any other means to ensure the seeds germinate, which prohibits farmers from engaging in other income-generating activities, Abdallah Mgimwa, a farmer in the region, said.

He said farmers have been alternating crops to avoid rodent infestation and to ensure they get income from their produce.

Friday Zabron, who grows maize and rice in Mbarali, in Mbeya region, said rodents were attacking their maize, rice and even cassava farms.

He said farmers in the region were battling not only pests and diseases but also rodent infestation.

“If there is a technology to keep rodents from our fields, it is obvious that many farmers will want to use it,” he said.

Commenting on the rodents control technology, COSTECH Director General Dr. Amos Nungu said the Commission was proud to have funded the technology, which aims at addressing farmers’ challenges.

“We are looking forward to seeing the final results so that we can take it to the end-users who are farmers,” he said.

“Agriculture is key to the industrialization agenda of the fifth phase government. It provides food, nutrition and raw materials. Therefore, we must make sure that the rodents are controlled,” he said.

“The problem is that rodents are everywhere in the country, so when we come up with a technology that controls them, we feel happy because we know very well that agriculture is key to development,” he said.

COSTECH is parastatal organization with the responsibility to co-ordinate and promote research and technology development activities in the country. It is the chief advisor to the government on all matters pertaining to science and technology and their application to the socio-economic development of the country.

 

Ends/emn

 

 

 

SUA develops anti-rodent technology using cat’s urine

By Gerald Kitabu

FARMERS whose fields are prone to rodent attacks can now smile following the development of a new technology that controls rodents.

The technology has been developed by Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro region.

A research fellow at the university, Dr. Georgies Mgode, said the university developed the technology using cat urine to prevent damage caused by rodents to crops while still in field and in storage facilities.

“We developed the technology based on the concept that rodents are always afraid of a cat. We also know that some people may like the benefits of a cat but not the cat itself,” he said.

He said after realizing that animals use urine to mark their territories, they thought of using cat’s urine as a tool to control rodents on crops.

The researcher said they had already extracted a compound from the cat’s urine and realized that the urine had active ingredients for a rodent to feel the presence of a cat whenever the urine was placed.

“This makes rodents not to attack crops, be it in the field or in storage facilities,” he said.

He said the technology can also be applied in the house as rats are also said to cause damage to electrical wires, besides causing various diseases.

According to Mgode, the approach of a trap barrier system is also used in controlling rodents in the field and residential houses.

“It is an approach where farmers’ plants in a ten square metre farm around which a wall is constructed as a barrier to prevent rodents from getting on to the farm,” the researcher said.

He said a hole is also made leading the rodent to a trap where it is trapped.

“This makes farmers easily collect rodents and kill them, thereby decreasing their population in the area, allowing farmers to plant the remaining field,” he said.

The researcher commended the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) for supporting the technology initiative which will improve farmers’ harvests.

Reached for comment on the new technology, retired agricultural research officer from the Ministry of Agriculture Protas Tesha said the cat urine technology will help millions of farmers in rain-fed regions to easily get rid of rodents.

Tesha, a former officer in charge of a rodent control centre in Morogoro region, said farmers face rodent threat challenges in many regions, thereby threatening agricultural development.

“Rodents reproduce and multiply faster during the rainy season than during the dry season due to abundant food supply and good hiding areas,” he said.

According to him, most susceptible areas where rodents multiply fast include Morogoro, Rufiji, Bagamoyo Lindi, Mtwara, and Tanga.

In these areas, he said farmers are still unaware of the hazards rodents cause to their crops, hence little effort is being made to smoke them out.

He said in some areas rats known as scientifically as Mastomys were found to have a high reproduction system, breeding up to 18 newborns in 21 days.

He said the ministry was however working in close collaboration with farmers to control the rats.

The ex-agricultural research officer said in most rodent-infested areas farmers apply poison, which is also dangerous to human health.

“Farmers need not wait for the government to do everything for them. Instead they should embark on clearing their farms to control the rats,” he said.

Farmers in the five food basket regions in the country say rodents have become a huge problem in recent years.

In Morogoro region, rice and maize farmers are struggling to control rodents in their fields, which have been badly affected by rodent infestation.

“We use box traps or toxic baits to control the rats, but this strategy has never completely eliminated them,” said farmers in Misufini and Dibamba villages in Mvomero district, Morogoro regon.

Farmers in Iringa region are not spared from rodent infestation. They said the menace of infestation begins soon after planting through to harvesting.

“Rodents normally dig planted seeds from underground, leaving the field empty without the seeds, forcing farmers to plant again the seeds,” they said.

After planting the seeds, farmers are forced to guard their fields by using traps and any other means to ensure the seeds germinate, which prohibits farmers from engaging in other income-generating activities, Abdallah Mgimwa, a farmer in the region, said.

He said farmers have been alternating crops to avoid rodent infestation and to ensure they get income from their produce.

Friday Zabron, who grows maize and rice in Mbarali, in Mbeya region, said rodents were attacking their maize, rice and even cassava farms.

He said farmers in the region were battling not only pests and diseases but also rodent infestation.

“If there is a technology to keep rodents from our fields, it is obvious that many farmers will want to use it,” he said.

Commenting on the rodents control technology, COSTECH Director General Dr. Amos Nungu said the Commission was proud to have funded the technology, which aims at addressing farmers’ challenges.

“We are looking forward to seeing the final results so that we can take it to the end-users who are farmers,” he said.

“Agriculture is key to the industrialization agenda of the fifth phase government. It provides food, nutrition and raw materials. Therefore, we must make sure that the rodents are controlled,” he said.

“The problem is that rodents are everywhere in the country, so when we come up with a technology that controls them, we feel happy because we know very well that agriculture is key to development,” he said.

COSTECH is parastatal organization with the responsibility to co-ordinate and promote research and technology development activities in the country. It is the chief advisor to the government on all matters pertaining to science and technology and their application to the socio-economic development of the country.

 

Ends/emn

 

 

SUA develops anti-rodent technology using cat’s urine

By Gerald Kitabu

FARMERS whose fields are prone to rodent attacks can now smile following the development of a new technology that controls rodents.

The technology has been developed by Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro region.

A research fellow at the university, Dr. Georgies Mgode, said the university developed the technology using cat urine to prevent damage caused by rodents to crops while still in field and in storage facilities.

“We developed the technology based on the concept that rodents are always afraid of a cat. We also know that some people may like the benefits of a cat but not the cat itself,” he said.

He said after realizing that animals use urine to mark their territories, they thought of using cat’s urine as a tool to control rodents on crops.

The researcher said they had already extracted a compound from the cat’s urine and realized that the urine had active ingredients for a rodent to feel the presence of a cat whenever the urine was placed.

“This makes rodents not to attack crops, be it in the field or in storage facilities,” he said.

He said the technology can also be applied in the house as rats are also said to cause damage to electrical wires, besides causing various diseases.

According to Mgode, the approach of a trap barrier system is also used in controlling rodents in the field and residential houses.

“It is an approach where farmers’ plants in a ten square metre farm around which a wall is constructed as a barrier to prevent rodents from getting on to the farm,” the researcher said.

He said a hole is also made leading the rodent to a trap where it is trapped.

“This makes farmers easily collect rodents and kill them, thereby decreasing their population in the area, allowing farmers to plant the remaining field,” he said.

The researcher commended the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) for supporting the technology initiative which will improve farmers’ harvests.

Reached for comment on the new technology, retired agricultural research officer from the Ministry of Agriculture Protas Tesha said the cat urine technology will help millions of farmers in rain-fed regions to easily get rid of rodents.

Tesha, a former officer in charge of a rodent control centre in Morogoro region, said farmers face rodent threat challenges in many regions, thereby threatening agricultural development.

“Rodents reproduce and multiply faster during the rainy season than during the dry season due to abundant food supply and good hiding areas,” he said.

According to him, most susceptible areas where rodents multiply fast include Morogoro, Rufiji, Bagamoyo Lindi, Mtwara, and Tanga.

In these areas, he said farmers are still unaware of the hazards rodents cause to their crops, hence little effort is being made to smoke them out.

He said in some areas rats known as scientifically as Mastomys were found to have a high reproduction system, breeding up to 18 newborns in 21 days.

He said the ministry was however working in close collaboration with farmers to control the rats.

The ex-agricultural research officer said in most rodent-infested areas farmers apply poison, which is also dangerous to human health.

“Farmers need not wait for the government to do everything for them. Instead they should embark on clearing their farms to control the rats,” he said.

Farmers in the five food basket regions in the country say rodents have become a huge problem in recent years.

In Morogoro region, rice and maize farmers are struggling to control rodents in their fields, which have been badly affected by rodent infestation.

“We use box traps or toxic baits to control the rats, but this strategy has never completely eliminated them,” said farmers in Misufini and Dibamba villages in Mvomero district, Morogoro regon.

Farmers in Iringa region are not spared from rodent infestation. They said the menace of infestation begins soon after planting through to harvesting.

“Rodents normally dig planted seeds from underground, leaving the field empty without the seeds, forcing farmers to plant again the seeds,” they said.

After planting the seeds, farmers are forced to guard their fields by using traps and any other means to ensure the seeds germinate, which prohibits farmers from engaging in other income-generating activities, Abdallah Mgimwa, a farmer in the region, said.

He said farmers have been alternating crops to avoid rodent infestation and to ensure they get income from their produce.

Friday Zabron, who grows maize and rice in Mbarali, in Mbeya region, said rodents were attacking their maize, rice and even cassava farms.

He said farmers in the region were battling not only pests and diseases but also rodent infestation.

“If there is a technology to keep rodents from our fields, it is obvious that many farmers will want to use it,” he said.

Commenting on the rodents control technology, COSTECH Director General Dr. Amos Nungu said the Commission was proud to have funded the technology, which aims at addressing farmers’ challenges.

“We are looking forward to seeing the final results so that we can take it to the end-users who are farmers,” he said.

“Agriculture is key to the industrialization agenda of the fifth phase government. It provides food, nutrition and raw materials. Therefore, we must make sure that the rodents are controlled,” he said.

“The problem is that rodents are everywhere in the country, so when we come up with a technology that controls them, we feel happy because we know very well that agriculture is key to development,” he said.

COSTECH is parastatal organization with the responsibility to co-ordinate and promote research and technology development activities in the country. It is the chief advisor to the government on all matters pertaining to science and technology and their application to the socio-economic development of the country.

 

Ends/emn

 

SUA develops anti-rodent technology using cat’s urine

By Gerald Kitabu

FARMERS whose fields are prone to rodent attacks can now smile following the development of a new technology that controls rodents.

The technology has been developed by Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro region.

A research fellow at the university, Dr. Georgies Mgode, said the university developed the technology using cat urine to prevent damage caused by rodents to crops while still in field and in storage facilities.

“We developed the technology based on the concept that rodents are always afraid of a cat. We also know that some people may like the benefits of a cat but not the cat itself,” he said.

He said after realizing that animals use urine to mark their territories, they thought of using cat’s urine as a tool to control rodents on crops.

The researcher said they had already extracted a compound from the cat’s urine and realized that the urine had active ingredients for a rodent to feel the presence of a cat whenever the urine was placed.

“This makes rodents not to attack crops, be it in the field or in storage facilities,” he said.

He said the technology can also be applied in the house as rats are also said to cause damage to electrical wires, besides causing various diseases.

According to Mgode, the approach of a trap barrier system is also used in controlling rodents in the field and residential houses.

“It is an approach where farmers’ plants in a ten square metre farm around which a wall is constructed as a barrier to prevent rodents from getting on to the farm,” the researcher said.

He said a hole is also made leading the rodent to a trap where it is trapped.

“This makes farmers easily collect rodents and kill them, thereby decreasing their population in the area, allowing farmers to plant the remaining field,” he said.

The researcher commended the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) for supporting the technology initiative which will improve farmers’ harvests.

Reached for comment on the new technology, retired agricultural research officer from the Ministry of Agriculture Protas Tesha said the cat urine technology will help millions of farmers in rain-fed regions to easily get rid of rodents.

Tesha, a former officer in charge of a rodent control centre in Morogoro region, said farmers face rodent threat challenges in many regions, thereby threatening agricultural development.

“Rodents reproduce and multiply faster during the rainy season than during the dry season due to abundant food supply and good hiding areas,” he said.

According to him, most susceptible areas where rodents multiply fast include Morogoro, Rufiji, Bagamoyo Lindi, Mtwara, and Tanga.

In these areas, he said farmers are still unaware of the hazards rodents cause to their crops, hence little effort is being made to smoke them out.

He said in some areas rats known as scientifically as Mastomys were found to have a high reproduction system, breeding up to 18 newborns in 21 days.

He said the ministry was however working in close collaboration with farmers to control the rats.

The ex-agricultural research officer said in most rodent-infested areas farmers apply poison, which is also dangerous to human health.

“Farmers need not wait for the government to do everything for them. Instead they should embark on clearing their farms to control the rats,” he said.

Farmers in the five food basket regions in the country say rodents have become a huge problem in recent years.

In Morogoro region, rice and maize farmers are struggling to control rodents in their fields, which have been badly affected by rodent infestation.

“We use box traps or toxic baits to control the rats, but this strategy has never completely eliminated them,” said farmers in Misufini and Dibamba villages in Mvomero district, Morogoro regon.

Farmers in Iringa region are not spared from rodent infestation. They said the menace of infestation begins soon after planting through to harvesting.

“Rodents normally dig planted seeds from underground, leaving the field empty without the seeds, forcing farmers to plant again the seeds,” they said.

After planting the seeds, farmers are forced to guard their fields by using traps and any other means to ensure the seeds germinate, which prohibits farmers from engaging in other income-generating activities, Abdallah Mgimwa, a farmer in the region, said.

He said farmers have been alternating crops to avoid rodent infestation and to ensure they get income from their produce.

Friday Zabron, who grows maize and rice in Mbarali, in Mbeya region, said rodents were attacking their maize, rice and even cassava farms.

He said farmers in the region were battling not only pests and diseases but also rodent infestation.

“If there is a technology to keep rodents from our fields, it is obvious that many farmers will want to use it,” he said.

Commenting on the rodents control technology, COSTECH Director General Dr. Amos Nungu said the Commission was proud to have funded the technology, which aims at addressing farmers’ challenges.

“We are looking forward to seeing the final results so that we can take it to the end-users who are farmers,” he said.

“Agriculture is key to the industrialization agenda of the fifth phase government. It provides food, nutrition and raw materials. Therefore, we must make sure that the rodents are controlled,” he said.

“The problem is that rodents are everywhere in the country, so when we come up with a technology that controls them, we feel happy because we know very well that agriculture is key to development,” he said.

COSTECH is parastatal organization with the responsibility to co-ordinate and promote research and technology development activities in the country. It is the chief advisor to the government on all matters pertaining to science and technology and their application to the socio-economic development of the country.

 

Ends/emn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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