The “Four Pest Campaign” of 1958 was initiated by the totalitarian communist regime of Comrade Mao Zedong. His aim was to eradicate pests like mosquitos, flies, rats, and sparrows!
They considered sparrows a pest because these lovely little birds eat grains. You can read more about this campaign and its failure online.
1. Wikipedia Link – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_Pests_campaign
2. The World Atlas – https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the-four-pests-campaign-objectives-execution-failure-and-consequences.html
In less than two years killing of sparrows resulted in an increased locust population. They tried to control it through the excessive use of pesticides. They failed miserably. This resulted in the infamous famine of China of the 1960s, popularly known as Mao’s Famine resulting in somewhere between 15-45 million deaths.