Xuan Thoi Thuong commune, Hoc Mon district is considered the origin of locust fishing in Ho Chi Minh City. People who follow this profession say that if they win a trick every night, they can earn millions of dong.
Every afternoon, dozens of households in Xuan Thoi Thuong commune, Hoc Mon district (HCMC) prepare big nets, flashlights and boots. Adding a few bundles of brooms to the container, they roamed the fields in Cu Chi, Tay Ninh, Long An… to catch locusts.
“A bad day can also get 400,000 VND. This job is comfortable because there is no time constraint. Working at night, so you don’t have to go to the sun like many other jobs. Every time you deliver, you have money, you don’t have to wait until the month to receive your salary.” Mr. Nguyen Thanh Trung from Hamlet 4, Xuan Thoi Thuong Commune listed a series of advantages of the profession.
Locust hunters look for large grasslands to practice. A few decades ago, this profession was not known to many people. Locusts are caught by hand, no need to select each type. The number is large, so it is possible to go racquet in the early morning or evening. Because, this is the time when they go out to feed.
Following this profession since childhood, Mr. Dao Van Ty (38 years old, Ba Diem commune, Hoc Mon district) said he “sleeped day and night”. Around 4pm, he started practicing. The spots near the house are very competitive, so he often has to go more than 100km, down to Tien Giang to catch.
Mr. Ty and a friend crossed many fields to reach the locust place in the night.
About 30 minutes, Mr. Ty will put the number of locusts caught in a box designed on the car.
The present time is the time when locusts proliferate. The catcher has to go far. If they have experience and the right racquet, it only takes a few hours for them to earn more than 1,000,000 VND.
Every night, the locusts catch thousands of locusts. The destination is large lawns, fields… Therefore, they have to design a box with bundles of brooms like this so that they stick, not overlap, leading to suffocation and death. When you get home, it will be easier to catch and sort.
Sellers must continuously sort locusts until 3-4 am.
For the old ones that have grown wings, it costs 500-1,000 VND. The young cost from 2,000 to 3,000 VND. Each plastic bag will have 10 pieces, perforated for ventilation.
Racquets and locusts were purchased by Mrs. Pham Thi Toi, in Xuan Thoi Thuong commune. Every day, the purchase price fluctuates about 25 million VND.
“Every 4 am, I bring to the insect market in District 5 to sell to small traders. In addition, I also pack boxes to distribute throughout the country. The job is like playing, not many people know about it at first. My family has been doing this job for more than half a century,” said Ms. Toi.
The traders all said that they are rarely empty. Some birds are too big and old to sell, if they are still in stock, they are brought back to dry, pureed into bran and sold to bird food stores. Small profit but not afraid of loss.
In the early morning, the insect market area in Thuan Kieu area (District 5) is crowded with people going in and out, mainly men. Buyers and sellers all enlist early to choose the young locusts. It was not until 9 am, all the small traders were happy because the goods were sold out.
“Nowadays birdwatchers are more than before and prefer fresh food over available food. When feeding birds live locusts, the feathers will be smooth, fat and sing better,” said one birdwatcher.
Keyword: Make millions every night thanks to locusts on the grasslands of Ho Chi Minh City