Thursday, April 30, 2009

Experts urge Goans to stay away from Frog meat

The Indian Bullfrog as well as the Jerdon Bullfrog are reported to be facing the threat of extinction and the continued fancy for frog meat among many Goans could prove to be detrimental to our ecological concerns according to experts who have raised the alarm bells against the poaching for frogs in Goa

Bullfrog Goa Frogs are a distinct part of the ecological balance of the environment and their reduction or extinction would have serious consequences. If there are no frogs, or fewer frogs in Goa, it could lead to a rise in vector borne diseases as there would be a surge of insects since there would be no frogs to eat them. Also the threat of snakes intruding into human establishments in search of food is another reality in the face, as the main food for snakes is frogs and their reduction through human poaching, could cause the unnecessary imbalance in Goa.

Excessive harvesting of frogs upsets the ecological balance and increases the need for insecticide to protect crops, thereby increasing both pollution and costs of agricultural produce. Also the amount of chemical fertilisers and pesticides in use in agriculture also contributes to the decimation of a huge population of frogs in the state of Goa.

The forest department along with "wild Goa" is expected to tighten the enforcement regulations regarding the poaching of frogs in the state in the coming season and defaulters can expect the worst nightmare if caught while poaching for their jumping chicken.

The authorities in Goa have also decided to create a mass awareness by involving people from all walks of life to participate in the drive. This includes students being involved in organising contests, quiz competitions, screening of short educative films besides street theatre.

The authorities in Goa have also identified the favourite spots for frog hunting in the state and the list is being circulated among forest and police officials to enable better co-ordination in the clampdown on offenders. There is also a proposal to spread awareness through the Church to spread the message to the faithful to abstain from poaching or eating frog meat. Village gram sabha meetings are also considered to be another avenue of creating mass awareness in the villages of Goa

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