Report: EWDA Conference 2016

The Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW) in Berlin did an amazing job on organising the 12th Conference of the European Wildlife Disease Association (EWDA). From the August 27-31, wildlife health professionals and students from Europe and beyond gathered at the BfR – the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. Our Chair Anne-Fleur and Communications Officer Miguel attended the conference to represent the Student Chapter Board.

The scientific programme was very well set up, not only focusing on wildlife diseases, but addressing topics such as management strategies and conservation as well.

Miguel presented the Student Chapter’s progress during the General Meeting on Sunday, with a special focus on the changes in Student Chapter membership requirements that were implemented several months ago.

On Monday, Anne-Fleur gave a presentation about the way the Student Chapter is build-up, the Country Representative system and recent developments regarding the 7th Student Workshop.

In the afternoon we visited the beautiful  UNESCO biosphere reserve Spree Forest. We went on a very relaxing boat journey navigating the quiet stream branches, before reaching the location where we would have dinner and where the auction would be held. The auction was a great success, with over €2,900 being raised for the Student Chapter.

Tuesday evening, we organised the Student-Mentor mixer. Twelve professionals and forty students participated in this event.

Wednesday was already the last official day of the conference. Congratulations to the winners of the Student Presentation Awards:

  • Lydia Franklinos
  • Iris Marti (highly recommended)
  • Monica Salvioli (highly recommended)

And the winners of the Student Poster Awards:

  • David Walker
  • Cecilia Tegner (highly recommended)
  • Ezgi Akdesir (highly recommended)

The locations of future conference were revealed as well. The next WDA Conference will take place in Mexico and the 13th EWDA conference will be held in Greece.

The new Chair of the EWDA Board Marie-Pierre Ryser-Degiorgis wrapped up the conference with the take-home message that within the next years we should try and focus on solutions for the problems that we are researching, not only the problems themselves.

The conference ended with a delicious banquet, during which Victor Simpson received the WDA Distinguished Service Award.

Compliments to the organisation and a big thank you to all the participants for the interesting lectures, inspirational new ideas, the donations during the auction and above all: the fun.

We’re looking forward to the next conference and hope to see you there!

The EWDA Student Chapter Board