In line with the proposed implementation of the Integrated Pest Management development in forest nurseries and plantations, the ERDB spearheaded the conduct of a 4-day training on “Standardization of IPM activities and deliverables” on June 11-16, 2016 at the ERDB Auditorium.

ERDB Director Henry A. Adornado who graced the opening program along with other key officials of the Research Bureau stated that the training is imperative considering the country’s problem on pest infestations because of monoculture forest plantations like that of the Benguet pine in Baguio City.

“With the knowledge gained from the workshop, we can share our expertise to field men in the DENR and LGUs regarding requests for technical assistance in the preservation of centennial, heritage/historical trees usually in urban areas”, he said.

Twenty one (21) technical and support staff from the ERDB and six (6) Research Centers nationwide participated in the workshop.

ERDB Pathologist Ms. Marcelina Pacho and UPLB Entomologist Prof. Dianne Joy Aguilon shared their valuable expertise to the participants through lectures on basic knowledge on insects/diseases, common forest pests occurring in plantations and nurseries as well as practicum or hands on exercises on identification and assessment of damage incidence and mitigating measures.

Rehabilitation of diseased centennial, heritage/historical trees through tree surgery and the latest technology on tree injection was among the highlights of the training shared by For. Joselito Sumabat, a Senior Research Specialist from the Biodiversity, Coastal, Wetlands and Ecotourism Research Center.

The workshop is an opportunity to train the new breed of talented researchers on IPM to replace the senior researchers as a result of the DENR-ERDB rationalization plan.

The IPM research study which is planned to start this year 2016 and onwards will be implemented in all the Research Centers nationwide in partnership and cooperation with concerned entities, SUCs, LGUs, government agencies. It aims to generate a database of pests and diseases occurrence and management strategies which will be an output for the preparation of an updated Guidebook on Forest Pests and diseases in the Philippines.

The plan to operationalize IPM down to the field level of the DENR was first proposed in the 1990s and hoped to be revitalized with the conduct of capability trainings and a national survey of pests and their mitigating measures. Estrella E. Patrimonio, WWRRC