I attended the Conservation Asia 2016 conference in Singapore in June, it was a joint meeting between SCB and ATBC’s Asia chapters. Around 600 people attended the conference and my overall impression was that it was a very good conference, the range of talks and the quality of them was very high and the networking opportunities for at least me, were very good. I presented a 15-minute talk in the symposia titles “Amphibian Conservation Asia: Approaching standard methods”. My talk was titled “Automatic Acoustic Monitoring: Current use and Challenges” and went through a few of the issues currently existing when it comes to standardization in the field and where the field is moving in terms of automated species ID from acoustic data, I also talked about the project we are due to launch in Kinabalu Park on automated acoustic monitoring and why I think this project will give us more information that will help us towards standardising our methods.
I met and talked to a lot of people during the conference, they provided invaluable hints, feedback and tips as well as hopefully being useful contacts for future projects. I also met some people I haven’t seen in a long time, for example Gerry Ryan for the QAECO group who gave two excellent presentations on his vulture and dolphin work relating to conservation impacts. I also met some colleagues that I met in Taiwan two years ago that work on amphibians, two of them had poster presentations and it was nice to see some of the work they’ve done since I saw them last (Min Feng Chuang, P04; Chi-Shiun Wu, P15). Dr Yeong-Choy Kam had a presentation in the amphibian symposia on “Life-history traits explain body size patterns of frogs in different altitudes”.
Apart from a wider range of very conservation and ecology specific presentations, I also went and saw a talk by Natalia Huang from Ecology Matters in the symposia “Business and Conservation Biology”, it was titled “Why Biologist need to be non-biologist” and talked about how the problem with not getting on between different sectors is often due to communication issues and a problem with understanding the point of view of the person from the other field and how we as conservationists and ecologists can be helped by ensuring that we understand other sectors and ensure that we communicate effectively with them.