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Rice paddy guarding 2020-2021: assessment of the main season campaign

The crop guarding resumed in March 2021 in Vohitrarivo (VOI Miaradia) and extended in May 2021 to Volotara (VOI Manirisoa) and Sahofika (VOI Samivar).

It stopped at the end of June after the end of the « main season campaign » harvest.

From March to June 2021, none of the paddy fields watched by the guards was attacked, confirming the effectiveness of the system put in place.

However, some damage was reported in some paddy fields when the guarding started after the report of an attack.

The guard team was strongly reinforced in May since it is now composed of 40 people (vs. 24 between November 2020 and February 2021).

The guards, who work in team of 4, take turns watching the rice fields from the moment the rice grains are mature until they are harvested.

The increase in the number of guards is explained by:

-the extension of the crop guarding to the 3 sectors of our intervention area (= 3 VOI).

-the period: the « main season campaign » corresponds in fact to the most important rice harvest of the year during which all the rice fields are cultivated;

-the good results of guarding in 2019-2020: 66 farmers (vs. 43 between November 2020 and February 2021) wished to benefit from this service during the « main season campaign ».

A field assistant reinforced the guarding team for 1 month in order to carry out several surveys.

He notably followed the 4 teams of guards in Volotara, recording for 15 days the movement of the groups 8 and 9, the number and location of the attacks as well as the position of the guards:

Survey of the guarding at Volotara : white spots = location of the greater bamboo lemurs, green spots = position of the guards and in red spots = location of the attacks © Helpsimus

Note that in 15 days, the guards repelled 24 attacks in Volotara.

Finally, a fourth footbridge was built on the territory of group I.

The footbridge on the terriroty of the group I © Helpsimus

The map below gives the location of the 4 footbridges on the territories of the groups I and II:

Location of the footbrigdes / red spots = position of the group II in 2020&2021, pink spots = positionof the group I in 2020&2021 © Helpsimus