Seventh annual Wildlife Animal Disease Virology Laboratory event held

WAVDL group photo

Participants in the 7th annual Wildlife and Disease Laboratory’s recent “Palooza” event, held at Austin Cary Learning Center May 27-28, 2021.

The sixth annual Wildlife Animal Disease Virology Lab-“Palooza” event took place May 27-28 at UF’s Austin Cary Learning Center, and was a huge success, organizers said.

The event brings together a variety of aquatic disease researchers present their research on a variety of diverse topics relating to diseases of wildlife and aquatic animals.

According to Dr. Tom Waltzek, the event included 51 presentations from 21 faculty members, research scientists/veterinarians, four postdoctoral researchers and 20 undergraduate or graduate students from four out of five academic departments at the college as well as UF-IFAS. Topics addressed included the ecology and diseases of aquatic invertebrates, fish, amphibians/reptiles and birds/mammals, given by individuals from a variety of backgrounds.

Dr. Julie Moore, chair of the college’s department of infectious diseases and immunology, kicked off the event with an opening address to the participants. Keynote speakers who introduced specific sessions included Drs. Salvatore Frasca and Andy Kane (invertebrates); Dr. Roy Yanong (fish); Dr. Elliott Jacobson (amphibian/reptiles)); Drs. Robert Bonde and Martine deWit (marine mammals.)

“Each day there were over 25 individuals who participated in-person and over 100 individuals who participated remotely via zoom from seven U.S. universities, three international universities, three U.S. agencies and two international agencies,” Waltzek said.

“The purpose of the meeting is to allow undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers to share their aquatic animal research in a friendly/constructive environment,” Waltzek said. “Most of our students will be presenting at upcoming summer and fall meetings.”

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