Every two years entomologists from around southern Africa gather to attend the Entomological Society of Southern Africa (ESSA) Congress. This year the 21st ESSA congress took place in Durban from 8th – 11th July and 14 CBC staff and students contributed presentations and a poster to the congress.
Themes at the congress ranged from biodiversity conservation, agriculture and biodiversity informatics, to insects as feed and food, invasive insects, invertebrate pathology and weed biological control. The approximately 230 delegates included students, academics and government officials.
Three delegates gave valuable, informative and useful plenary talks during the congress. The first plenary speaker, Professor John Pickett gave a talk which covered the field of innovative entomology for the sustainable management of pests and beneficial insects. Professor Lizette Koekemoer spoke about malaria sterile insect techniques, while the final plenary speaker, Dr Aruna Manrakhan shared insightful information about the integrated management of quarantine insect pests, focusing on the case of frugivorous fruit fly. Overall a very well run, informative conference complimented by Durban’s very mild winter weather!
The next ESSA congress will be held in 2021, and will be hosted by the University of Venda, based in Thohoyandou in Limpopo Province.
CBC delegates at the 21st ESSA Congress in Durban (Photo: Melissa Peyper)