The symposium was organised by my supervisor Liesbeth Bakker and Bart Grutter, both from the Aquatic Ecology department of NIOO. The syposium brought both aquatic ecologists and marine biologists to talk about the newly built islands in the Marker Wadden region in The Netherlands.
The symposium was opened by Liesbeth Bakker and Han Olff, a professor from the Rijksuniversiteit of Groningn, and coincidentally also Guido's supervisor of his internship.
Many people attended the symposium, differing from BSc students, PhD's, professors and people from the Dutch ministry. Many organisations, such as the Natuurmonumenten, Deltares and NIOZ were present. The most interesting talks were from Han Olff (RUG) and Jan van Gils (NIOZ).
Han Olff presented how it work with "novel ecosystems" and if they exists and how to deal with them in newly man-made areas.
Jan van Gils presented the bird-aspect of the whole Marker Wadden project, the impact on the birds in the past few years here in the Netherlands and how important our country is to birds who migrate all the way down to Mauritania.
It was good to meet new people from other institutes and organisations. As a newly graduated BSc student I was happy to attend such an important symposium.
Soon after the break I left towards Amsterdam for the next meeting: Save Our Sharks! Read more next time!
Wageningen University and Research organised a symposium in Den helder on the 8th of december 2016. The symposium was held at the theather named De Kanpaje. The main reason of the symposium was to inform attendants about all the research that took place in the past 5 years on the Saba Bank by many different governmental and non-governmental organisations.
Saba Bank is a very unique and pristine submerged atoll in the Caribbean and the third largest of the world. With a 2,680 square kilometer in size with depths ranging between 20 to 50 metesr of depth, the bank provides many resources (e.g. fisheries) to the communities on the surrounding islands as a hotspot of biodiversity.
Research institutes such as Wageningen Marine Research, formally known as IMARES, has been doing a lot of research on the bank the past 5 years. From making a benthic mapping, trying to find new species, and placing acoustic loggers for sharks and marine mammals. For this, the symposium was organised in order to bring people together, from students and members of the ministry, and inform about the accomplished goals and the results of the researches. The day started at 10:00 and finished at 17:30. Guido and I (and many other friends and theachers of my school) were present that day. Similar research about the queen conchs that I did back in Anguilla, was presented by Martin de Graaf. Guido's supervisor, Erwin Winter, presented the results of the research that Guido has been doing around Saba for his thesis. We all got the chane to speak with many different people who we already knew and catch up with everyone's work.
Finally, the day was closed with a discussion board in which all presenters discussed what the next step is for the Saba Bank Research. We got a book with the printed work of the Saba Bank with some really beautiful pictures on it. If interested a copy of the book can be downloaded here in PDF: