1st Announcement & Save the Date
Dear Colleagues,

We have great pleasure in announcing that the next Entomology Society of Southern Africa (ESSA) Congress will be taking place in Durban from 8 - 11 July 2019 at the Coastlands Umhlanga Hotel & Conference Centre.

Entomology has long been recognized as a major discipline in food security and human and animal health, and as insects make up the bulk of living organisms on our planet, also in the biodiversity and ecological functioning fields. The importance of studying insects and knowing about them has had major impacts in curbing diseases such as Chikungunya and Zika. Malaria is still a problem. Sugarcane has in recent years been attacked by the exotic Sipha flava (Yellow sugarcane aphid) and an indigenous cerambycid (the insect emblem for our congress). Our timber industry, and local tree biodiversity is being threatened by the exotic polyphagous shothole borer (Euwallacea fornicatus). However, there are exciting new techniques available that help us study these interactions, and develop control and monitoring measures. These will be part of the focus of the congress. A rapidly developing field in entomology is the production of insects as sustainable protein sources for animal feed, and even ice cream made from insect protein "milk" is available and is fit for human consumption! In fact, the production of insects for animal feed is already an international multimillion Rand industry, with South African companies, and locally trained entomologists employed by them, as major role players. We will be looking at this in more detail as part of the congress. It is so exciting that entomological science is growing, and is being harnessed is such innovative ways, which led to the theme "Innovative Entomology" being chosen for the ESSA 2019 Congress.

We will be encouraging contributions encompassing new and novel approaches to research and problem solving. There will be three parallel sessions each day covering topics such as agricultural entomology, biocontrol, medical and veterinary entomology, plant-insect interactions, pest management and many more. This will be a great opportunity to meet and interact with specialists, other researchers, hear about the latest research, make new contacts and develop research collaborations. We are also hoping to bring potential investors to the party, to get exposed to a growing entomological industry. Please visit our website regularly for news and updates on the innovations being planned.

The 2019 ESSA Congress will be the 21st National Congress of the Entomological Society of Southern Africa and we are very excited to be hosting it in Durban. We look forward to welcoming you to the Congress and to Durban, the warmest place to be, especially in July!

Dr Des Conlong
Chairperson: ESSA Congress 2019

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