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"Experientia docet" - Experience is the best teacher

Dear Fellow Animal Scientists,

We have reached the end of another year and in this last communication, a brief update on the most important matters concerning our association.

Since the last Communique, three of our members have passed away and we extend our deepest sympathies to their families, and as Animal Scientists we recognise their contributions to our profession.

In Memoriam

Dr Jasper Coetzee

Mr Herman Stassen

Mr PJ Grobler

SASAS Website – almost there…!

The SASAS website is under construction and we trust that all members have had a look at the new webpage with less clutter and user-friendly drop-down menus.

In order to compile an electronic database of all members, you will be requested to affirm your membership by registering online. This will ensure that SASAS has your updated contact details and information.

 Please find the instructions for this reregistration in the accompanying document. You will also receive reminders early in 2019! Please assist us with this process to ensure we have a complete database!

SA Journal of Animal Science

The Journal experienced high volumes in submissions, and thanks to Prof van Ryssen who stepped in again as editor, in the absence of Prof Muchenje, the backlogs have been handled. To date 5 issues of volume 48 (2018) with 100 articles (997 pages) have been published; and a further issue with approximately 20 articles should be published online by the end of January 2019. SASAS wishes to extend its gratitude to Prof van Ryssen for his assistance and efficiency.

Owing to the high costs of printing and distribution, SASAS council decided to discontinue the printing of hard copies of the Journal from 2019. SAJAS will be published online, with all articles available via the SASAS website. The content pages of new issues will be sent electronically to members.

SciELO SA, (Scientific Electronic Library Online) is an open-access searchable full-text journal database in South Africa with its main focus the global dissemination of open access journal content. One of its functions is to ensure the maintaining of a high scientific standard in scientific publications in South Africa. At a recent SA Editor’s Forum a list of compulsory features to be included in articles, has been announced. SAJAS already complies with most of the prescriptions except that authors now have to include their researcher’s ID (ORGID) in future publications, and implement the Digital Object Identifiers (DOI’s) of articles in the list of references. SAJAS will start introducing these features in 2019.

The Editor-in-Chief of SAJAS, Prof Muchenje, is still recovering, and hopes to resume his duties by the 1st of February 2019.

Branch activities

The Free State Branch and Northern Branch joined forces to present an Industry day for Animal Science students during the ALFA Expo in Parys (Free State) on 19 September 2018. An AGM was held with feedback from the President on behalf of council. The Western Cape branch held their AGM at the end of September, and the KZN branch will have / had their meeting at the end of the year.

Podcast competition 2019!

Details of the podcast competition for undergraduate students for 2019 will be circulated to all Animal Science departments, and students are encouraged to participate. The theme will be the same as that of the congress: “Managing the ecological footprint of livestock through efficient production”.

The winners will be announced at the 2019 congress.

Continuing Professional Development

Register and complete activities for 2018 credits: Before going online, make sure you have your SACNASP number ready for login (password is your ID number).

 An infographic is ready and will be circulated to assist you in activating your CPD inputs on the SACNASP CPD website.

 Professional animal scientists who have attended or will be attending other congresses in 2018 should consult the list loaded onto the CPD website. If the specific congress is not listed, please contact the Secretariat ( with the details of the congress/symposia qualifying for CPD.

Please note: Livestock industries presenting short courses / workshops and other training events are encouraged to contact the chair of the CPD committee ( and submit the events programmes for obtaining credits. Credits can be earned by both presenters and delegates.

SASAS Congress – last but not least!

The Free State Branch will host the 51th SASAS Congress from 10 to 12 June 2019 at the University of the Free State with an appropriate and current theme “Managing the ecological footprint of livestock through efficient production”.

The first announcement has been circulated – ensure not to miss the early bird registration.

Friendly reminders


Applications for the SASAS bursaries close at the end of February 2019. Postgraduates in Animal Science / Animal Production disciplines can apply. Applications must be submitted through the student’s university department.

Nomination for Medal awards:

Members can be nominated for the 2018 and 2019 medal awards.

 Election of SASAS council members

An election for SASAS council members will be held during the congress. Nominations will open soon.

Forms and instructions for the above will be placed on the SASAS website

Student quiz

Provided sponsorship is obtained, the student quiz will be held during the congress. Questions and answers of the last two competitions have been placed on the SASAS blog.

On behalf of council, I wish you a festive safe, season and a prosperous new year!

Compiled by

Esté van Marle-Köster (PhD, Pr. Nat Sci)

SASAS President

6 December 2018

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