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Monday, June 13, 2011

CAREER IN PLANT BREEDING

 

Plants and flowers not only provide aesthetic beauty to our gardens and freshen up our lives, but also act as important scientific material for our basic needs and medicines. Plant breeding technicians provide technical support and services to botanists and other professionals working in agricultural and plant biology. They research, methods and ways of improving plant breeding. They produce new or improved plant and crop varieties better suited to environmental conditions and commercial needs.

Plants are chemical factories that produce all kinds of products useful to humans. Besides food, plants provide raw materials for paper, building materials, solvents and adhesives, fabrics, medicines, and many other products. For example, aloe vera plants are used in creams and healing solutions. Therefore, plant breeding technicians will work on growing specific plants for specific purposes. They also test the chemicals produced by different plants to help scientists find new uses for them. For example, we use some other plant chemicals to treat certain types of cancer.

CHOOSING PLANT BREEDING AS A CAREER

Since the field is so broad, plant breeding technicians may specialize in various areas such as plant genetics, conservation work, environmental biology, limnology (the study of freshwater plants, animals and chemistry), mycology (the study of fungi), or taxonomy and systematic (the classification of plants and their relationships). Some focus their work on field studies, searching for new species to perform experi-ments, while others study the ecology of plants, which is the interaction of plants with other organisms and the environment.

Plant breeding technicians that perform conservation work use their botanical knowledge to help manage parks, forests, rangelands, wilderness areas and breed specific plants within an ecosystem. Public health and environmental protection professionals depend on their understanding of plant science to help solve pollution problems. Some plant breeding technicians organize and participate in field inventories, documenting species for various types of studies. Others work primarily in research and teaching. The results of plant breeding research has increased and improved our supply of medicines, foods, fibers, building materials, and other plant products.

SIGNIFICANCE AND SKILLFULNESS

Plant breeding technicians must have an interest in nature and an appreciation for all forms of plant life. They should be quick learners and should have the ability to work outdoors for extended periods of time. They should also have a serious concern for the environment, and interest in protecting and breeding endangered plant species. Most plant breeding technicians have  the ability to work both alone or in teams. They should have strong communication skills, both written and oral, and enjoy synthesizing biological information.

EDUCATIONAL PATHS 

Plant breeding technicians usually require completion of a one or two-year college programme in botanical techno-logy or plant breeding technology. Certification in plant breeding/botanical technology or in a related field is available through associations of technologists and technicians and may be required by some employers. Usually, a two-year period of supervised work experience is required before certification as a plant breeding technician.       

A post graduation in Genetics and Plant Breeding or a Ph.D in Genetics and Plant Breeding is preferred. These courses are offered exclusively in the Agricultural Colleges. A graduate degree in Agriculture is essential to pursue post graduate course. The field is also open for post graduates in Botany. Botany students have to study basic courses of Agriculture in addition to the courses in Plant Breeding.

DISTINCT TYPES OF JOBS

•   Set up, operate and maintain laboratories for botanical breeding and  research
•   Care for plants and make sure they stay healthy
•   Assist in genetic research of plant breeding
•   Collect specimens and samples, and grow cultures of micro-organisms
•   Prepare specimens for examination and perform experiments
•   Write reports on results and findings
•   Check the quality of plants
•   Set up and maintain instruments and equipment


JOB OPPOURTUNITIES

•    As a breeder
•    Park Ranger
•    Plant Pathologist
•    Ecologist
•    Professor/Teacher
•    Farming Consultant
•    Researcher
•    Horticulturist
•    Nursery Manager

Source : http://employmentnews.gov.in/Career_Plant_Breeding.asp
Career in Plant breeding, Career cope in Plant Breeding

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