Friday, September 16, 2011

Rat Farms

This story
Thanks to hunters, and a promise of prizes from the provincial government, Bulacan’s rice farms were saved from widespread devastation by field rats.

Farmers, who joined a rat hunting competition launched by Gov. Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado in May, killed 106,620 rats and saved about 80 percent of the province’s rice farms from rodents that feasted on their crops.

To encourage farmers and residents to help eliminate field rats, called “dagang bukid” here, Alvarado promised an incentive of P1 for every rat killed.

reminded me this from the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett
“Shortly before the Patrician came to power there was a terrible plague of rats. The city council countered it by offering twenty pence for every rat tail. This did, for a week or two, reduce the number of rats—and then people were suddenly queueing up with tails, the city treasury was being drained, and no one seemed to be doing much work. And there still seemed to be a lot of rats around. Lord Vetinari had listened carefully while the problem was explained, and had solved the thing with one memorable phrase which said a lot about him, about the folly of bounty offers, and about the natural instinct of Ankh-Morporkians in any situation involving money: “Tax the rat farms.”

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