Photo Credit: Michelle Lavery (UNB)

Photo Credit: Michelle Lavery (UNB)

By Michelle Lavery (MSc Candidate, UNB), Follow Michelle on Twitter @JMichelleLavery

This year, CCFFR-SCL was held in St. John’s, NL. With Craig Purchase (MUN) at the helm, about 240 researchers participated in the two-day conference. We were treated to three great plenary talks; Julia Baum (UVic) gave the Stevenson lecture on marine conservation in Canada, Bill Taylor (U Waterloo) received the Rigler award from the SCL and spoke about phosphorus lake dynamics, and Matt Bogard (UQAM) received the Peters award for student achievement from the SCL for his work on methane production in lakes. Oh, and we were only allowed one muffin each at break times, as per Craig’s opening statements.

Photo Credit to Sarah Lehnert (U Windsor)

Photo Credit: Sarah Lehnert (U Windsor)

Over the course of the conference, we saw talks covering a wide range of topics from habitat conservation to genetics to aquaculture to invasive species. Nick Whalen, Liberal MP for the St. John’s East riding, seemed to enjoy the diversity of talks and attended both days. A number of DFO Newfoundland scientists were among the presenters, openly and proudly discussing their research for the first time in several years. The @DFO_NL twitter account was filled with #WeAreProud tweets about their scientists’ talks at the conference!

Keeping with the theme of open science communication, Steve Cooke organized a session specifically investigating how to “get it in” (publish your research) and “get it out” (talk about your research). The session opened with talks from Steve, Doug Letto, Jan Woodford, Natalie Sopinka, and Jacqueline Chapman, covering everything from the science of scientific publishing to creativity’s place in communicating science to remaining relevant as an early career scientist. Following these talks, Steve moderated two discussion sessions with panelists from academic publishing, academia, and communications. You can check out a summary of the science communication session on Storify at: https://storify.com/jmlavery/ccffr-scicomm-session.

If you’re interested in other CCFFR-SCL sessions, many attendees participated on Twitter using the hashtag #CCFFR. I’d recommend @LetsFishSmarter, @phishdoc, @rquinla, @DFO_NL, @SJC_fishy, @envczk and @VictoriaHowse (among many others) for more on the talks and some fish-related hilarity.

Neat year, we’re headed to Montreal – we hope to see you there for another round of great fish science! Also, stay tuned for several exciting symposiums at AFS Kansas City.