Scare me not. Giant and creative Bambanti, an Iloko term for scarecrow, rule the streets of Ilagan City, Isabela during this month’s Bambanti Festival to promote the province as the new emerging agro-industrial capital of the Philippines.  While farmers usually use scarecrows to drive away birds, researchers at International Rice Research Institute allow the feathered creatures to flock on their fields. Researchers observed that of more than 50 different bird species that visit their fields during the reproductive and ripening phases of the rice crop, only four are known to feed on rice. Majority of the species feed on insects.

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Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) is a government corporate entity attached to the Department of Agriculture created through Executive Order 1061 on 5 November 1985 (as amended) to help develop high-yielding and cost-reducing technologies so farmers can produce enough rice for all Filipinos.

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Philippine Rice Research Institute