We challenged Ana Cristina Borges (Vivaria Unit, Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Portugal) to share her experience during the 1st virtual edition of the ZHW. Here’s what she has to say:
The 2021 edition of the Zebrafish Husbandry Workshop organized by Aquaneering and ZHA took place last week on February 23rd-25th. It was a 3-half day virtual meeting held on the Zoom platform. The programme was very well put together. It included exciting talks covering the latest research on zebrafish husbandry, welfare, health and biology. The schedule of the first and third days was organized as “plenary” talks in a webinar format. The speakers delivered very enthusiastic talks followed by lively Q&A sessions with plenty of questions posed by the audience through the chat. The second day included ZHA Annual General Meeting followed by 9 concurrent sessions, for which the workshop participants were subdivided into dedicated breakout rooms. These sessions covered a wide range of topics that were presented, each, by a moderator, followed by an informal discussion within the small groups of attendants. I found the session on Core Services very good, with very clear and systematized ideas exposed by the moderator Diana Baumann, and the discussion that followed had lots of useful tips shared among participants.
Overall, I really enjoyed the meeting. The virtual format was very rich and captured the main goal of bringing the community together. Sure, I miss the live interaction with friends and colleagues of a “classical” meeting, but this format has advantages that should not be overlooked: it´s affordable, inclusive, and environment friendly. This was my second ZHA husbandry workshop and I´m looking forward to the next edition.
Kudos to the organizers! Long live the zebrafish community!