The control of invasive species in crops with low tolerance are seen as a public good. This makes it a collective responsibility led by government. This is done directly through public expenditure on control measures or indirectly through incentives to people whose actions may be a contributing factor to the problem. The risks associated with invasive species have been increasing especially with globalization but are changing in nature thus warranting novel strategies for their management.
Invasive alien species (IAS) are implicated in the extinction or decline of numerous native aquatic species worldwide. Their negative impacts occur through mechanisms including habitat alteration, competition, predation, hybridisation, and the spread of disease (Strayer et al. 2006). Small island ecosystems are most susceptible to the impacts of IAS. Once established, freshwater IAS are difficult to eradicate without negatively impacting native species.
Piano grass (Themeda arguens), reputed to have been introduced to Jamaica as packing material in an imported piano1 . There are about 27 varieties of this highly invasive grass/weed worldwide and in Jamaica the species previously identified as Themeda arguens is of concern as it has progressively taken over lawns, pastures and roadsides . The grass is of particular concern to livestock farmers due to its highly invasive and aggressive nature and the concomitant negative effect on livestock productivity, especially during its annual seeding period (November/December – April) , when the palatability of the grass diminishes significantly and the seed awns can cause severe damage to the mouth when consumed, and feet of livestock , sometimes requiring veterinary intervention.
The global essential oils market has been estimated to be US$10.6b in 2021 rising to US$16.0b in 2026 [(Markets, 2021)1] as a result of growth in awareness to preventative healthcare, improvements in the standard of living, along with an increase in the demand for aromatherapy products. With the potential availability of relevant plant materials in Tobago, it is appropriate to develop a strategy for the introduction of Plant Extracts Industry in the island.
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