A total of 20 participants from Plant Quarantine Agencies of the Ministry of Agriculture of Indonesia completed the SEAMEO BIOTROP Second Training Course on Invasive Alien Plant Species and Risk Analysis. The training course was held under the sponsorship of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization-Indonesia on 9- 14 May 2011 at the Centre’s headquarter in Bogor, Indonesia.
In general, the training course was designed in response to the rapid spread of invasive alien plant species (IAPS) in Indonesia and the expected damages they would cause to the country’s biodiversity and natural agricultural systems in which the populace depend on for their economic well-being. It recognizes the important roles of plant quarantine personnel to control the introduction of IAPS and analyze the risks of their spread to be able to come up with appropriate mitigating measures. Specifically, the training course was aimed to: (1) update the participants on the recent knowledge on IAPS; (2) enhance their knowledge and skills on risk analysis; (3) provide opportunities for them to interact and exchange information with each other on the subject matter; and (4) develop further interest and encourage the establishment of a network on IAPS experts among them.
The training course consisted of lecture-discussions, group and individual practical exercises, and field work. Lecture topics included Concept of IAPS and Their Impacts to Natural Vegetations, Biology of IAPS, International Convention on Plant Protection and Biological Diversity, Pest Risk Assessment, Weed Risk Assessment, Post Entry Weed Risk Management, , Concept of Plant Classification, Plant Morphology and Identification, Risk Assessment of Herbicide Resistant Plant, Plant Quarantine Regulation, Monitoring and Surveillance, Standard of Weed Risk Assessment and an Introduction to the National IAPS Data Base. Practical exercises focused on weed risk assessment, identification of IAPS, and IAPS data base searching. On the other hand, the one-day field trip was conducted at Cibodas Botanical Garden and Mount Gede Pangrango National Park where the participants learned about the various introduced plant species in Indonesia and how they have become invasive and compete with natural vegetation.
The participants produced two major outputs, namely: (1) a group output on risk analysis on pre- and post-entry of an IAPS, and (2) individual outputs on providing information on certain IAPS that were assigned to them which have not been entered in the National IAPS database.
Resource persons during the training course were Dr. Soekisman Tjitrosoedirdjo, President of the Weed Science Society of Indonesia; Dr. Ir. Arifin Tasrif MSc., Director of Centre for Plant Quarantine and biosafety for Plant, Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture; Dr. Sri S. Tjitrosoedirdjo, SEAMEO BIOTROP scientist; Mr. Rudyanto, IT National consultant of FAO, and Drs. Imam Mawardi and Indah Wahyuni SSi, SEAMEO BIOTROP researchers. Dr. Sri S. Tjitrosoedirdjo also served as the Technical Training Coordinator.