Arudra: Insects In Demand

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Red Velvet Mites or Rain Bugs are arachnids found in soil litter known for their bright red colours but are often mistaken for spiders. Arudra Insects are active predators as grown adults are often parasites on insects.

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The soil-friendly “Arudra Purugulu”, a breed of rare insects with velvet crimson body that appears exclusively in Arudra Karthe after the first rains in farms of Telangana, are being purchased by some agents reportedly associated with Ayurvedic medicine industry at Rs. 600 per kg illegally.

The pattern of stages is shared with that of other members of the Prostigmata: egg, pre-larva, larva, protonymph, deutonymph, tritonymph and adult (male or female). They usually have only one breeding cycle per year.

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The oil from the red velvet mite  or Trombidium Grandissimum (Arudra Purugulu) is used in traditional Indian medicine to treat paralysis. Also, considered as an aphrodisiac,  Trombidium  mites are referred in several websites as Indian Viagra.

A labourer at Saigudem village of Alair said that sub-agents are being paid Rs. 1,500 to Rs. 2,000 per kg by the agents of industries. However, the labourers had no clue why the agents are buying Arudra Purugulu. Since the Arudra Purugu is very crucial in maintaining the soil fertility and controlling the pest on crops, the development is worrying the farmers and agriculture officials.

The agents boils the insects alive and pack into bags, after drying up (image below) they transport them to Bangalore, Mumbai, Kolkata and some other Arab countries.

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Arudra: Insects In Demand

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