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International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine (IAAAM) conference

In May this year Wildbase staff member Serena Finlayson attended the annual conference for the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine (IAAAM) held at Sea World on the Gold Coast in Australia. 

‘Aquatic animal medicine’ encompasses any kind of animal living in water from small invertebrates to the largest of cetaceans and this conference certainly did not disappoint.  There were presentations on seastars, stingrays, crocodiles, platypus, seahorses, turtles, dugongs, dolphins, whales, seals, sea lions, sea snakes, penguins, electric eels and sharks just to name a few! 

Serena presented a poster on work that was done at the Wildbase hospital on the surgical correction and use of prostheses for bill mal-alignment in yellow-eyed penguin chicks (Megadyptes anitopes).  There was a very interesting presentation on the clinical pathology effects of crude oil and dispersants on hatchling loggerhead sea turtles by Associate Professor Craig Harms from The Center for Marine Sciences and Technology at the University of North Carolina. 

Some conference attendees even had a special behind-the-scenes tour at Sea World where they met Henry the not-so-little 1 year old polar bear cub and his mother and a huge Californian sea lion.  They were also able to look at their facilities for rehabilitating injured marine mammals where they were currently looking after a pilot whale.  It was a fantastic week and Serena was able to meet many new people doing fascinating work in aquatic animal medicine around the world.

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