Smoky Mountains photo by Staffan Lindgren

Today’s post is by Dr. Staffan Lindgren, University of Northern British Columbia, and Second Vice-President of the Entomological Society of Canada.

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I have just returned from the Entomological Society of America conference in Knoxville, Tennessee, and thought that this would make a suitable topic for my first ever blog. As I attended the ESC-ESA JAM the week before, it gives me a suitable reference point for evaluating the ESA meeting.

The ESA conference attracted ~3000 or so delegates, and consisted of numerous concurrent submitted sessions, over  100 symposia, and a sizeable poster session, with each set of 300+ posters available for viewing one day. In return for the $400 registration, you received a name tag, a program book, and some items encouraging you to attend the exhibition. If you were savvy and well connected, you could get some free snacks and drinks at one or several of the numerous university or ESA staff-specific mixers held more or less nightly (yes, I am savvy and relatively well connected). As a younger man, armed with enthusiasm, curiosity and at least a modicum of drive, I would identify all the talks relevant to my own research, and then run between sessions to catch them. Now I tend to pick a symposium or session and sit through it, as I find that I am more likely to get exposed to new and different ideas that way. When you have over 100 symposia over four days, however, it is near impossible to catch even a fraction of the sessions you wish to attend. I also like to browse the posters, rather than identify specific ones, but again – during a big meeting like ESA it is sometimes hard to get the time. It is extremely helpful when posters have 8×11 versions that you can take with you to read later, and you could scan QR codes with information on the posters (as well as sessions and exhibitors) into your smart phone/tablet if you were so inclined (I haven’t quite gotten there yet).  I would think these approaches are the future when the techies replace us old traditionalists. The meeting also had virtual posters for non-North American students unable to attend the meeting, which was a neat idea (even if I didn’t get around to looking at them either)!

Smoky Mountains photo by Staffan Lindgren

Smoky Mountains photo by Staffan Lindgren

The location of a meeting is obviously important. Knoxville has a lot to offer, not least of which is the “body farm”, or the University of Tennessee Forensic Anthropology Center Research Facility. Tours were offered to the site, but I don’t have the stomach for it, so I went with some colleagues to the Smoky Mountains instead (we did look at hemlock woolly adelgid, so it was an entomological trip!) The layout of the meeting venue is extremely important, I realized. Ideally, the session rooms should be organized around a central area, so that attendees have a chance to interact. The Knoxville meeting was held at the conference center, the layout of which was not conducive to personal interaction, unfortunately. It consisted of a three-storey square building, with the meeting rooms in the middle surrounded by a walkway, and the exhibition hall in the basement.  Consequently you could spend the entire meeting there and still not meet up with colleagues. I ran into two colleagues the evening of the last day I was there, and I failed to find one colleague I was actively looking for!

There are positives and negatives with every meeting, but when contrasting the Edmonton ESC meeting with the Knoxville ESA, or any other ESA meeting for that matter, I think ESC takes the prize both in terms of what you get for your registration fee, and ability to network with colleagues. The scientific program at the ESC meeting was of very high caliber as well, particularly the plenary session. Being small isn’t always a good thing, but when it comes to scientific conferences, I think it is a definite advantage. What do you think?

It’s that magical time of year again, when entomologists from across Canada converge to talk about insects, share their science, and make new friends. That’s right, the Entomological Society of Canada Joint Annual Meeting takes place this Sunday and runs until Wednesday afternoon!

This year’s meeting is being held in Edmonton, Alberta in association with the Entomological Society of Alberta, and looks like it’ll be a great time (check out this year’s program and abstracts if you don’t believe me). With a Student Workshop detailing “Perspectives on the Publication Process”, an exciting line up of plenary speakers and a live performance by the Lymantria Bug Band plus an Open Mic JAM following the banquet, there’s something for everyone at this year’s meeting.

Because attending conferences should be enlightening AND fun, we here at the ESC Blog have come up with a little conference BINGO to help you get the most out of your ESC 2012 experience. While there aren’t any prizes (other than the thrill of calling out BINGO! in the middle of a plenary session), we hope you’ll give it a try and see how many of the squares you can cross off your card! You can download the PDF here, and we’ll try and have printed copies available at the registration desk so everyone can play along.

Of course, if you can’t make it to the meeting this year, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Crystal and I plan on providing updates throughout the conference here at the ESC Blog, and you can follow along on Twitter by using the #ESCJAM2012 hashtag (I have it on good authority there will be a strong cohort of entomological Twitterati at this year’s meeting).

For those of you who will be attending the meeting, don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to Crystal & I and show off your completed BINGO card! We promise we don’t bite, but don’t be surprised if we bug you to submit an article for the blog. Of course, if you want to share your pictures or experiences from ESC 2012, let us know and we’ll be happy to pass them along to the world right here. Until then, safe travels getting to Edmonton, and remember: have fun, meet new people, and continue getting excited about entomology in Canada!

Vivez une expérience audio visuelle hors du commun en compagnie du conférencier Étienne Normandin. Musiques, sons et vidéos de la BBC et de « Bugs of the underworld » sont au menu dans le but d’émerveiller vos sens à la beauté et à la fantastique entomofaune aquatique.

Les insectes aquatiques ont été les premiers insectes à apparaître sur la Terre, mais aussi les premiers à utiliser la voie des airs. Dans cette conférence dédiée à un public de tous âges, vous en apprendrez plus sur les particularités des insectes aquatiques ainsi que leurs comportements. Ces insectes peuvent être de fameux architectes, des pêcheurs habiles et d’excellents chasseurs. Ils sont aussi très importants pour l’écologie des plans d’eau et sont de bons outils pour les biologistes.

2 novembre 2012, 19h00

Jardin Botanique, IRBV, Local 354

link: www.aeaq.ca
page facebook: Association des entomologistes amateurs du québec
groupe facebook: Association des entomologistes amateurs du québec

The Entomological Society of Canada is looking for volunteers for the upcoming JAM, November 3-7!

Volunteering looks great on your CV, is an excellent way to meet new people, and is fun! The Student Affairs Committee worked hard to keep student registration rates low, so we need a very strong showing of student volunteers to help make this meeting a success!

Sign up at http://www.doodle.com/i8znn4z75mtharfw by checking off times you are available. The full program is up now so you can confirm when you are presenting: check it out here!

A friendly reminder from  Adrian Thysse about the JAM 2012 Photo Competition!
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The deadline for submission to the 2012 JAM photo competition is October 30! All  JAM 2012 participants are eligible to enter, so why not submit your best shots now?

The theme for the competition will be Canadian Arthropods, and there are four categories:

  1. Dead – pinned or preserved specimens
  2. Alive – in the natural habitat
  3. Dead or Alive – predators with prey
  4. Alive with mites – insect mite symbiosis (Sponsored by International Journal of Acarology editor, Dave Walter)

$150 will be awarded to the winner for each category and the “Alive with mites” winner may be offered the opportunity to be a cover illustration for the International Journal of Acarology.

So far the judges include John Acorn, David Walter and myself, and we are looking forward to a wealth of submissions from all the many entomologists, amateur or professional, that will be attending JAM 2012.

Go check out the rules and submit today!

Greetings fellow entomologists,

The 149th annual meeting of the Entomological Society of Ontario is fast approaching!

The venue: Bonnenfant Outdoor Education Centre, West Carleton, Ottawa, Canada.

The dates: September 28-30th, 2012.

Registration is now open at the official meeting website.

Submit your Posters and Oral Presentations before September 17th to be assured of getting onto the program.

Students: enter the President’s Prize competition and win cash!

Don’t be disappointed – register early as we are limited to 100 participants.

See you in September!

Bruce Gill
ESO President
Chair ESO 2012

Chris Buddle, Editor-in-Chief, The Canadian Entomologist

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These days, scientific societies are struggling to maintain membership.  This is, in part, because the value of membership is not always apparent.  The Entomological Society of Canada has recognized this issue for years, but I believe we are starting to enter a new, exciting era for ESC members.   This will be especially apparent at the upcoming ESC Joint Annual Meeting (November 3-7,  2012) when the society will host its first hands-on “workshop”; this workshop is free for members of the society.  Let me repeat:  FREE for ESC members!  That is value for your membership.

There is, however, a catch:  you must register for this workshop in advance! 

Here are the details:

Workshop: “Perspectives on the Publication Process”

On Sunday November 4 from 9-12am, immediately before the start of 2012 Joint Annual Meeting in Edmonton, the Entomological Societies of Canada and Alberta are jointly hosting a workshop on the publication process at the JAM venue.  This goal of this workshop, focusing on Entomology in Canada, is to provide practical information and demystify the publication process from writing to reviewing to editing to publishing. This workshop is intended for anyone with an interest in the publication process, irrespective of career stage, experience, or age.

The workshop will start with four short and informative presentations

  1. Introduction, Chris Buddle, Department of Natural Resource Sciences, McGill University & Editor-in-Chief, The Canadian Entomologist
  2. An Editor’s perspective on process and issues in publication, Mark Goettel, Editor-in-Chief,  Biocontrol Science and Technology
  3. Some basic rules for writing a manuscript, Jeremy McNeil, Department of Biology, University of Western Ontario
  4. A publisher’s perspective on current challenges and opportunities in scientific publishing, Jonathan Speilburg, Cambridge University Press

This will be followed by moderated break-out sessions on five topics (selected based on feedback from ESC members).  These sessions are meant to be informal and interactive.   Attendees will be able to attend two breakout sessions.

  • The Peer Review Process
  • Picking the Right Journal
  • Ethics, Authorship and Data
  • How to Review a Scientific Manuscript
  • Current Challenges in Scientific Publishing

The workshop will finish with take-home messages from each of the break-out sessions and with a panel discussion with the featured speakers.

Attendees MUST sign up for the workshop by ticking the correct box on the form when pre-registering for JAM

This is a first come, first serve event with limited space and it is filling up fast.  So if you want to attend, register soon! Registration will include a food break, and is free to ESC and ESAB members; $50 for non-members (to be paid at the workshop).

If you have any questions, you can contact members of the workshop organizing committee:

Chris Buddle (chris.buddle@mcgill.ca)

Kenna MacKenzie (Kenna.MacKenzie@agr.gc.ca)

Rosemarie De Clerck-Floate (Rosemarie.DeClerck-Floate@agr.gc.ca)

Un évènement à ne pas manquer!

Les 1 et 2 novembre 2012, la SEQ tiendra à Boucherville sa 139e réunion annuelle sous le thème « Entomologie et agriculture biologique : de l’écologie à la pratique ».  Lors du symposium, plusieurs conférenciers de prestiges viendront présenter les dernières avancées en agriculture biologique, les applications de leurs recherches ainsi que les défis à relever dans le futur en agriculture biologique. En plus du symposium, plus d’une trentaine de présentations étudiantes et professionnelles seront données sur différents aspects de l’entomologie agricole et forestière lors de la première journée du congrès.  Pour plus de détails sur le programme et pour vous inscrire, consultez notre site Web à www.seq.qc.ca

An event not to miss!

On November 1st and 2nd 2012, the SEQ will hold its 139e annual meeting in Boucherville under the theme of “Entomology and organic agriculture: from ecology to practice”.  During the symposium, prestigious speakers will present the latest advances in organic agriculture, practical applications of their research and challenges in the future of organic agriculture.  In addition to the symposium, more than thirty talks from students and professionals on agricultural and forest entomology research will be given during the first day of the meeting.  For more details about the program and to register visit our website at www.seq.qc.ca

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Sophie Rochefort

Présidente, Societé d’Entomologie du Québec

By Adrian Thysse, Photographer and  co-organizer of the JAM 2012 Photo Competition
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The Joint Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of Alberta and the Entomological Society of Canada will be hosted in Edmonton, November 3-7, 2012 . All participants of JAM 2012 are eligible to participate in the photo competition.

The theme for the competition will be Canadian Arthropods, in the following categories:

1. Dead–pinned or preserved specimens
2. Alive–in the natural habitat
3. Dead or Alive–predators with prey
4. Alive with mites–insect mite symbiosis (Sponsored by International Journal of Acarology editor, Dave Walter)

$150 will be awarded to the winner for each category and the “Alive with mites” winner may be offered the opportunity to be a cover illustration for the International Journal of Acarology.

So far the judges include John Acorn, David Walter and myself, and we are looking forward to a wealth of submissions from all the many entomologists, amateur or professional, that will be attending JAM 2012.

Nothing to submit? There is a whole season of delicious bug photography still ahead!

The closing date for submissions is October 30, so get your macro lens on and get cracking! We are looking forward to a biodiverse flood of entries!

Sympetrum sp. Photo by Adrian Thysse

Originally posted at Splendour Awaits http://bugs.adrianthysse.com/2012/06/jam-2012-photo-competition-canadian-arthropods/

Today’s post comes from Julia Mlynarek on behalf of the 2012 ESC-ESAlberta JAM organizing committee.

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Dear students,

As you may have heard, there will be a workshop on the publication process called “Perspectives on the Publication Process” during the 2012 ESC-ESAlberta JAM.

Publishing research in a high quality, peer-reviewed scientific journal remains an important goal for us, but the process can be difficult to navigate, be frustrating, and create a great deal of anxiety and stress. On the Sunday morning immediately before the 2012 Joint Annual Meeting (4 November) in Edmonton, the Entomological Societies of Canada and Alberta will be jointly hosting a workshop at the JAM venue about the publication process. The overall goal is to provide attendees (students and seasoned professionals alike) with practical information about all aspects of publishing.

The organisers would like your input on the topics that will be discussed during the workshop. Please fill out this short (2 questions) survey by June 20th (I need to tally the scores and forward them to the organising committee).

The link to the survey – http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/KYN56MK

Please take the time to fill it out. It will ensure that you have a say in what is discussed!