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"Experientia docet" - Experience is the best teacher

Dining, Wining and Excellence at the Gala dinner

The 49th SASAS congress gala dinner was held at the Stellenbosch town hall on the 06 of July 2016. All the delegates were a sight for sore eyes in their dashing outfits, something different from the usual lab coats and work-suits. The guests were treated to a fun-filled evening, which was accompanied by great music and entertainment from the Amish Gypsy band, Zamar – celebrating through the plucking of strings.

The main order of the day was the handing out of awards to various students and researchers who have worked diligently to contribute to the Animal Science fraternity. There were bronze and silver medals, a president’s award, the most cited article in SAJAS over a period of five years, SASAS and AFMA best poster awards.

Prof M. Scholtz, the SASAS President, announcing awards

Zamar Band – celebrating through the plucking of strings

Bronze medals

Three bronze medals were awarded to acknowledge an exceptional contribution in research towards the generation of knowledge in animal science and the livestock industry. The first recipient was Dr Lise Sandenbergh for her PhD thesis titled “Identification of SNPs associated with robustness and greater reproductive success in the South African Merino sheep using SNP chip technology”. The second was Dr Maria Smith–Stofberg for A PhD thesis titled “A protocol for liquid storage and cryopreservation of ostrich (Struthio camelus) semen”. The third and final recipient was Ms. Zimkitha Soji for her MSc thesis titled “The classification of beef, pork and mutton carcasses in a selected high throughput abattoir in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa”.

Silver medals

Two silver medals were awarded in respect of achievements obtained over a number of years. The first recipient was Dr Trevor Dugmore for his active participation in research, research leadership as well as technology transfer over many years. The second recipient was Prof Esté van Marle-Köster who revolutionised the South African genetic and breeding improvement landscape through the introduction of board molecular genetics.

SAJAS award

The award for the most cited article in SAJAS over a period of 5 years went to M.A Snyman- “Factors affecting pre-weaning kid mortality in South African Angora goats”.

Postgraduate and final year student awards and Prizes

The student’s awards for best final year student, as well as a postgraduate bursary and/or prizes were awarded to Ms N. Ngwendu (University of Fort Hare), K. O’ Reilly and D. du Plessis.

SASAS President’s award

Prof Hettie Schonfeldt, as the manager of RMRD-SA, received the president’s award for her particular and significant contribution to the Animal Science, the animal industry profession and the society at large.

 Poster awards

The AFMA award for best student poster went to Mr. Mashudu Daniel Ramabau who is a second year MSc candidate at the University of Venda. The Studbook award for best student poster went to A. A Zwane et al.

We congratulate all the award recipients. Job well done!!!

Committee elections

Three members were running for election and two (Dr Carrel Muller, Prof Voster Muchenje) were voted in to council with a third member being co-opted (Dr Hames De Villiers).

After the formalities the evening was transformed to selfies and a couple of wine snatching moments, which undoubtedly led to the free dance lessons that followed. What happened thereafter stays in the Stellenbosch town hall.  We look forward to the 50th congress, to be hosted by the SASAS Eastern Cape branch in 2017!!!





Some of the delegates mingling

Compiled by: Sipho Mabusela, SiphokaziNyeleka, Mzuvukile Mcayiya and Yonela Njisane


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