Girl Leads Ducks

Cayuga ducks follow along back to the taro patch to eat. They were imported to help control the proliferation of the golden apple snail which is devastating to taro crops in Hawaii. The snail lays eggs on the plant and feeds on the root of it causing it to wither and die. <br />
The apple snail was introduced to Hawaii in 1989 as a possible cash crop -escargot of the tropics. It began invading taro patches in Hawaii--a traditional staple crop of native Hawaiians. <br />
Asian entrepreneurs brought the snail from Argentina or Paraguay into Taiwan and then Japan in the late '70s with hopes that it would become a culinary favorite. In the '80s it was hyped as the "miracle snail" in the Philippines and slipped into China, Korea, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Laos, Papua New Guinea, Vietnam and Hawaii. <br />
It began creating problems for rice farmers and considered a pest--in the late '90s it <br />
cost Philippine farmers between 25-40 million dollars.<br />
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There are always dangers in quick solutions when you use non-native species to battle non- native species. But the fear is that these introduced ducks from California may breed with the native ducks. Although these are allowed, no more can be imported.

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