I have the awesome fortune to live in Austin TX where the Ecological Society of America’s 97th Annual Meeting was held. Through very little effort of my own I got to enjoy a one week nerd holiday. Imagine more than 4000 ecologists wearing sweat wicking shorts and Chacos while debating, listening, and contributing to the wealth of research currently going on in North America and around the world. Each day was full of exciting research, TexMex, and Lone Star beer. The Austin Convention Center is so large I felt as if I was doing the stairmaster as I continually switched rooms trying to go to every talk I found interesting (which was more than time allowed).
Although there were only six primate talks they included an interesting variety of topics from primate community assembly (Lydia Beaudrot and Maria Gavilanez), the folivore paradox (Damien Caillaud), lemur sensory reliance in foraging (Julie Rushmore), bonobo occupancy with anthropogenic disturbance (Jena Hickey), and how extinctions of large Malagasy primates altered community trait structures (Onja Razafindratsima).
It was a fantastic way to start the 2011/2012 academic year, and certainly helps keep the Ecology juices flowing.