It’s been an exciting week at The Wildlife Society’s 2020 Virtual Conference. More than 2,500 participants — a record number — took part in a week of informative symposia and talks, thought-provoking panels and chances to connect with fellow wildlifers from afar.
“Despite the virtual nature of the event, I was really pleased by how much this still felt like a conference,” said TWS CEO Ed Thompson. “There were plenty of live events and engagement opportunities that made it essential to attend each day to get the full value out of the experience.”
Much of the content — including contributed papers and posters, symposia and panel discussions — will continue to be available to attendees for six months. Watch your inbox for details about how to access it.
“Pivoting this conference online was such an incredible feat,” said TWS Business Relations and Conferences Manager Nick Wesdock. “We’re all adapting to this new virtual world together. Lots of learning happened this week, but I’m most excited that we’ve learned new ways to come together. Thanks to everyone, especially our attendees.”
Thompson said he was pleased so many more were able to attend the event, including more than 1,200 career professionals. “The education and training they are receiving plus the new connections they’ve made during the conference will benefit future wildlife conservation efforts,” he said.
Keep scrolling for some highlights from this week’s activities.
"My plea to the membership: TWS must become a more welcoming environment to underrepresented groups. We have to change."
- Outgoing TWS President Gary White, in his plenary speech
“We share a passion and that’s what makes this profession special.”
- John Organ, recipient of the 2020 Aldo Leopold Award
“Conservationists must become advocates and activists. For many people, this seems anathema to the scientists and data gatherers we’ve been trained to be.”
- Drew Lanham, speaking on the need to make the wildlife profession more inclusive
A record number of wildlifers attended this year's Virtual Conference. Pictured here are participants in a symposium on the effects of solar arrays on bird life.