Mangrove biosecurity workshop

  • Mangrove biosecurity workshop image

On 18 February 2021, PHA teamed up with the Cairns and Far North Environment Centre (CAFNEC) to hold a mangrove biosecurity workshop at Cairns Aquarium.

The evening workshop was well attended with around 35 industry participants including reef tourism operators, sugar cane farmers, university staff, and representatives from CAFNEC and the Mulgrave River Catchment Landcare group.

The workshop highlighted the importance of biosecurity, provided an overview of the biosecurity system and outlined how members of the community can get involved. Volunteers from MangroveWatch a not-for-profit organisation focusing on the global conservation of mangrove and tidal wetland environments, received a special mention and appreciation for their enthusiastic participation in activities to date.

PHA Project Officer, Emily Lamberton, also presented on a recent project to develop an Environmental Risk Mitigation Plan for Mangroves and Associated Communities.

In 2020, PHA undertook a project funded by Australia’s Chief Environmental Biosecurity Officer with input from environment and industry groups around Cairns and Australia. The project looked at the major exotic threats to mangroves and what is needed to better protect them. Developing a risk mitigation plan was an important step towards this, as was strengthening relationships with local groups through this workshop.

The presentations concluded with a practical session on the reporting mechanisms available if something unusual on a plant is found, followed by an interactive discussion session.

Participants recognised the synergies between environmental management, sustainability and biosecurity preparedness and were keen to ensure that their local ecosystems could be better prepared.