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Abstract

Due to increasing scarcity of freshwater resources available for irrigated agriculture and escalating demand of food around the world, it will be necessary to produce more food with less water. Since, more irrigated land is devoted to rice than to any other crops in the world, wastage of water resource should be minimized (IRRI, 2003). Rice has been grown in low land areas under flooded conditions which required 3000-5000 liters of water for producing one kg rice. To address the problems of water scarcity, researchers had been looking for ways to decrease water consumption. One method to save water in irrigated rice cultivation is the intermittent drying of the rice fields instead of keeping them continuously flooded which is alternate wetting and drying irrigation (AWDI). For up scaling AWD, it is better to start with support for wider practices. Five case studies were conducted at Muktagacha, Phulpur, Trishal upazillas of Mymensingh district and Nalitabari and Nokla upazillas of Sherpur district in Bangladesh. It is seen that overall yield increased 11.7 percent by applying AWD where as it was 12.36 percent at DAE demonstration (DAE, 2010). It also can reduce irrigation use (29 to 34%) and pumping cost significantly. DAE demonstration experience through NATP showed that by using AWD, irrigation reduced 33 percent and cost reduced about 27.98 percent (DAE, 2010). BCR of applying AWD is 1.30 meaning is AWD application is beneficial for farmers. It can be concluded from FGD and IFDC’s research that: AWD demonstration saved amount of water, time and labour; yield of rice is higher in AWD plot than traditional practice. Finally undertaking massive dissemination of AWD programs through DAE staffs at the field level and print and electronic media such as TV, News paper, etc. are required.

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