I had a great time there. Even though, I reckon that they could provide a translation service for next year since more than 20% were non German. Also, an abstract in English of the conference would be very much appreciated.
Sergé had a great act of kindness by pioneered the first conference in English to promote a more international event. I had a great time at his conference on Italian species which I found very interesting theme. And Henk also was very kind by explaining all his conference in English at the lunch time in our table.
I missed some conference on captive breeding, husbandry, techniques and so rather than having more conferences of localities, beautiful pictures and trips.
I also had the chance of getting some CB species which I was very much interested of such as t.vittatus cilicensis from Serge, hynobious juveniles along with a great bottle of Belgium Beer from Henk which I will drink tomorrow
several species from Harry such as cynops cyanurus, leucistic t.carnifex…, and so on.
Moreover, some people brought adult specimens which where wild capture, imported (I got a couple of pachyhynobius shangchengensis ;) and captive breed. There is a bipolar attitude towards that from the very radicals from both sides to the more wise with more wide-ranging attitudes on that. I don’t bother at all if enthusiast take a couple of adult specimens as long as is not for economic purposes. We don’t have to forget, for example, that more than 10.000 amphibians and reptiles die at the roads every year just in Spain, plus summer fires, introduction of fishes for sport fishing, urbanisation, pollution and a long list of unlucky degradation environment factors for amphibian’s populations. If exchange occur between enthusiasts with few WC animals (by their own judgement- if they consider that this is not a harm for the population or if they considered it is not easily available as CB for whatever circumstances, or whatever) this should be always done away from any meeting as Gersfeld, caudate.org or any thing with a public image that promotes and supports the values we all know and probably also support. I reckon that everybody understands that the main aim of those meeting, website and so is to increase the knowledge of those fascinating animals, create a good culture, a hobby meeting point, and promote captive breeding and availability of CB animals.
It is also important to consider that the lack of background may end up with a wrong impression. I suppose, the collection of hundreds of adults from nature is not even considered as an option from anyone here. But, some people might have a lot of exceeding adult animals as well. Is not common but few people breed some species in big outdoors enclosures for years. For example, a couple of Spanish keepers have overstock adults of salamandras, triturus species (there is one Spanish colleague with more than 100 adults triturus vittatus, karelinii and so running in their outdoors enclosures for years). If he has the change to come to Gesrfeld some day most people could get a wrong impression by the fact that he offers or exchanges a great number of adults. So, it is very wise to know the person and the story behind before any criticism.
The attitude of all attendances in all aspect, rather than plain criticism, will change future meetings. Gersfeld was great by all means and few shadows might have put tinny dots in the brightness of the meeting. Lets try all of us to improve next year meeting. I will try to bring a lot of CB animals next year to let other enthusiast enjoy my species and to back up my budged meeting. I almost couldn’t come back to Spain since I had no money left in my pockets, just a great smile in my face, new colleagues and a lot to talk about till next year.