COLOSS Conference, Montreal, Canada, 2019

COLOSS Conference, Montreal, Canada, 2019

2019 COLOSS Conference
Montreal, Canada.

Figure. 1. Attendants of our 2019 COLOSS Conference in Montréal, Canada. Photo: N. Carreck.

 On behalf of our 1,305 members from around the world, I would like to express my many thanks for the Trust’s support of our association. This year our event took place just before Apimondia, on the 7th and 8th of September. It was hosted by Pierre Giovenazzo and his team at the Université Laval’s Montréal campus, right in the heart of the city.

This year’s event was our best attended yet! One-hundred-sixty-nine members from 36 countries attended (Figure 1). We were absolutely thrilled by this, since we were unsure what our attendance numbers would be given that this was the first COLOSS conference hosted outside of Europe.

 Like previous conferences, this year’s event included two General Assembly meetings, one Executive Committee meeting, a poster session that included 34 presentations, and 9 Core Project and Task Force workshops. The meeting started with a welcome address by Dr. Giovenazzo. Then, similar to previous meetings, participants received updates from each our Core Projects (Monitoring, BEEBOOK, B-RAP) and Task Forces (Apitox, Bee Breeding, CSI Pollen, Small Hive Beetle, Varroa Control, Varroa Survivors, Vespa, Viruses). The meeting wrapped up with a final General Assembly, and announcement of this year’s student poster prize, which was awarded to University of Saskatchewan doctoral student Sarah Wood (Figure 2).

Figure 2. The COLOSS Conference Student Award Committee, consisting of Asli Ozkirim, Per Kryger, Raffaele Dall’Olio,
and Robert Brodschneider, award this year’s award to Sarah Wood. Photos: P. Chantawannakul.

Besides occurring outside Europe for the first time, three other important milestones took place. First, COLOSS held concurrent sessions with the Bee Informed Partnership, a non-profit organization that works closely with beekeepers in the United States (Figure 3). This yielded great discussions about future trans-Atlantic networking opportunities.

Figure 3. Karen Rennich and Nathalie Steinhauer introduce COLOSS to the Bee Informed
Partnership. Photo: P. Chantawannakul.

The second milestone was the election a new Executive Committee. Those elected to a new 3-year term were Maria Bouga (Greece), Tjeerd Blacquiere (The Netherlands), Robert Brodschneider (Austria), Norman Carreck (United Kingdom), Panuwan Chantawannakul (Thailand), Raffaele Dall`Olio (Italy), Vincent Dietemann (Switzerland), Anna Gajda (Poland), Ales Gregorc (Slovenia), Lotta Fabricius Kristiansen (Sweden), Peter Neumann (Switzerland), Asli Özkirim (Turkey), Christian Pirk (South Africa), Victoria Soroker (Israel), and Geoff Williams (United States). Of those elected, Peter Neumann was elected President, Geoff Williams and Panuwan Chantawannakul as Vice Presidents, and Vincent Dietemann as Secretary/Treasurer.

The third milestone was the creation of a new Task Force. Focused on bee nutrition, it is headed by Simone Tosi and Michel Bocquet, and will host its first workshop in 2020.

        “We wholeheartedly appreciate your commitment to COLOSS, and look forward to furthering our partnership in the future”.

Geoff Williams,
COLOSS, Vice President.