The rural weather department

The rural weather department A good mango harvest augurs well for paddy production, says a popular Oriya folklore. So, many farmers in paddy-intensive regions of the state, such as Bargarh district, plan their paddy-selling quota on this basis. Another popular folklore in Orissa links good tamarind harvest to floods. There are many such examples from across the country. With geographical impressions of many generations embedded into it, folklore is a perfect indicator of ecological patterns of an area. But mainstream science regards it very disparagingly. So when Artabandhu Mishra, a scientist with the life science department of Orissa's Sambalpur University, came out with a compilation of Oriya folklore about drought forecasting, it amazed many of his compatriots. The Regional Centre for Development Co-operation

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