How do you get the most out of a conference (while still enjoying it)?

A few weeks ago I attended the joint annual meeting (JAM) of three Entomological Societies: British Columbia, Canada, and America. I was able to attend because it didn’t require any major travel, and I also was able to keep other costs to a minimum.Socializing is an important part of conferences. This gathering was after a IUFRO meeting in Italy, which followed the 1996 World Congress (which I did not attend). From left to right are…

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Living in Paradise

It is human nature to take our environment for granted. Once in a while we get a reminder of how privileged we are living where we do, particularly if we enjoy being out in forest and field. That is certainly the case living on Vancouver Island. We enjoy a benign climate and we are surrounded by a diversity of organisms that is unparalleled in the temperate regions of the world. Lately I have certainly been…

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Life in space – An earthling biologist’s perspective.

The other day I was listening to a CBC Summer Edition discussion about space exploration, and specifically putting human beings on Mars. The discussion centred on the risk of contaminating Mars with organisms from earth, but also the risk of introducing martian organisms to earth. There was also some discussion of the “Are we alone” question. Mars Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 IGO Based on fairly recent estimates, there are perhaps 300 billion stars in our…

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