Veterinarian seminar as a digital live event for the first time

After the veterinarian seminar had to be canceled last year due to the COVID situation, an attractive and safe solution for all involved could be created for this year's event. The by now sixth edition on November 24, 2021 was broadcasted as a virtual live event from a studio specially rented for this purpose. With eight renowned speakers, exciting lecture topics as well as 54 participants, the premiere was a complete success.

In Germany, still only few veterinarians specialize on ornamental fish. The veterinarian seminar, held by sera in cooperation with VDA/DGHT, intends to create awareness for topics concerning ornamental fish diseases as well as their treatment, and to offer interested veterinarians an opportunity for further education. The target group of the seminar includes two parts: on the one hand it approaches established veterinarians who cooperate with pet retail stores; on the other hand official veterinarians monitoring specialized pet stores. It is acknowledged as an official training by the German Federal Veterinarian Association, and due to the always multifaceted program with renowned experts it is now an inherent date in the calendars of many veterinarians.

Most of the speakers as well as moderator Dieter Untergasser gathered in the studio in Cologne for broadcasting the sixth veterinarian seminar. After a welcome by Dr. Andreas Franzky, president of the Tierärztliche Vereinigung für Tierschutz e.V., the first speaker of the day started with a very serious topic. PD Dr. Verena Jung-Schroers, specialized veterinarian for fish at the Veterinarian University Foundation Hannover, informed about emergency euthanasia of ornamental fish and ornamental aquatic invertebrates. It was followed by a lecture about the topic "Tetras – Interesting facts about a fish group rich in species and specimens in the specialized pet trade“ by Dr. Stefan K. Hetz, specialized scientific referent for pets and international relationships at the Zentralverband Zoologischer Fachbetriebe e.V. In the following presentation, graduated biologist Frank Schäfer, Aqualog editor, explained "why catching ornamental fish in the wild is active species protection" and thus picked a currently strongly debated topic. Barbara Masurat from the fish disease working group at the VDA answered the question "Fancy variants of Carassius auratus  – healthy varieties with behavior appropriate for the species, or suffering breed?“ in her lecture. After the lunch break, Prof. Dr. Christian E.W. Steinberg from the Humboldt University in Berlin informed about dissolved humic substances which are foreign materials but essential for aquatic animals. Dr. Christine Schleicher, who has her own veterinarian practice with a focus on Koi, explained how to set up ponds appropriate for Koi. The last lecture part of the event was ushered in by Dr. Helmut Wedekind, director of the Institute for Fishery in Starnberg with the lecture topic "Snakehead fish (Channa spp.) – Biology and care“. Afterwards Dr. Ines Bolle, specialized veterinarian for animal protection and official veterinary concerns, LGL Bavaria, pointed out which requirements must be met for keeping big fish species in the specialized pet trade. The lecture series began and ended with PD Dr. Verena Jung-Schroers who spoke about applying regulation (EU) 2016/429 concerning ornamental aquatic animals. 

Since the traditional excursion on the following day was cancelled this year, a debate was held after lectures, during which all participants could speak about the new veterinary treatment regulation (EU) 2019/6 and its practical application. The seminar therefore again offered a wide and cutting-edge variety of topics also in this year, and received entirely positive feedback also as a digital live event. 
Planning the seventh veterinarian seminar has already begun.

Caption: This year's veterinarian seminar offered exciting and informative lectures by (from the upper left, clockwise): Dr. Ines Bolle (specialized veterinarian for animal protection and official veterinary concerns, LGL Bavaria), Dr. Andreas Franzky (president of the Tierärztliche Vereinigung für Tierschutz e.V. (TVT), Dr. Stefan K. Hetz (specialized scientific referent for pets and international relationships at the Zentralverband Zoologischer Fachbetriebe e.V.), Dr. Dirk Kleingeld (official veterinary concerns task force, Lower Saxony regional authority for consumer protection and food safety), Dipl. Biol. Frank Schäfer (Aqualog editor), Dr. Helmut Wedekind (director of the Institute for Fishery in Starnberg), Dieter Untergasser (Moderator, sera), Prof. Dr. Christian E.W. Steinberg (Humboldt University Berlin), Dr. Christine Schleicher (veterinarian specialized on Koi), Dipl. Des. Barbara Masurat (fish disease working group, VDA), PD Dr. Verena Jung-Schroers (specialized veterinarian for fish, Veterinarian University Foundation Hannover).


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