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Call for Submissions (General & Student)


Invasion: Facing the Plague of New Pests
November 7, 2023
Victoria Park East Golf Club 
Guelph, ON

Call for Submitted Oral and Poster Presentations

The Ontario Pest Management Conference (OPMC) will be held at the Victoria Park East Golf Club in Guelph on November 7, 2023. The OPMC features research on all aspects of pest management associated with plant, animal and human health. See for more details on the conference. For the 2023 conference, OPMC will be soliciting abstracts for:

  1. Student Competition - Graduate Oral Presentation (sponsored by CropLife Ontario Council) – 6 spots total, one $500 award and plaque for the winning entry

  2. Student Competition - Graduate Poster Presentation (sponsored by CropLife Ontario Council) – 6 spots total, one $500 award and plaque for the winning entry

  3. Student Competition - Undergraduate Poster Presentation (sponsored by OPMC) – 4 spots total, one $250 award and plaque for the winning undergraduate (or diploma) student

  4. General Posters – non-competitive

Submissions in diverse areas of pest management are encouraged. See below for abstract submission and oral/poster formatting requirements for all categories. The OPMC submission period for all categories (student competition and general) opens at 8 am on Monday, July 31, 2023 and closes at 12 pm (noon) on Friday, September 22, 2023. Entries before or after this period will NOT be accepted.

All entries must be submitted to



We have a limited number of openings on the 2023 agenda for submitted posters in the general category. Researchers or other industry members interested in submitting IPM-related research that are not eligible or not accepted for the student competition may submit to this category. Abstract submissions will be accepted on a first come, first serve basis, but must be received by the end of the submission period. Formatting for abstracts and posters are the same as for the student competition. Please refer to the OPMC Submission Guidelines section below.


General Eligibility:

  • The student must:

    • Be the principal investigator and presenter of the presentation or poster.

    • Submit the abstract themselves, but copy their primary supervisor on their submission. Note: Failure to copy the supervisor on the submission email WILL result in lost marks.

    • Be currently enrolled in a degree program (undergraduate, diploma or graduate) or have graduated from a degree program since the last conference (November 2022). Note: New graduate students can enter the undergraduate competition if they are presenting undergraduate research that was completed since November 2022.

    • Must be attending a Canadian university.

  • Students who have won in a category in a previous year are not eligible to reenter in that category but can enter another category or the general poster category.

  • Graduate students wishing to enter the Graduate Oral Competition must be presenting at least 2 years of their own data (2 field seasons or laboratory equivalent as a graduate student). Students with less than 2 years of graduate data will only be considered for the Graduate Poster Competition.

Selection Criteria:

The selection of entrants into the competition will be based on ensuring a balance of disciplines and research programs, how advanced the student is in their graduate program, how closely the entrant followed the instructions in the call for abstracts, and, to a lesser degree, order of abstract submission.

Close adherence to all competition instructions and deadlines outlined below is a requirement of the competition. Five percent of a student’s overall score will be assigned by the committee based on their ability to follow competition instructions, including abstract formatting requirements.


All abstracts should be submitted as an MS Word document (PDFs will NOT be accepted) using the following format. Failure to follow the submission requirements outlined below will reduce the student’s score in the competition and may affect their eligibility.

  • General and Student Submission:

    • The complete submission includes both the abstract and the answers to the questions below.

    • Abstract Guidelines: Provide your abstract as an attachment in MS Word using the following format:

      • Use Arial 11 font and single line spacing throughout (except as indicated) with no extra before and after spaces throughout.

      • Note: Before/after spacing are extra lines added by Word as a default. To remove these, go to "Paragraph" and under "Spacing", set Before and After to 0, and change line spacing to "Single".

      • Presentation title centered and bolded

      • 1 line space between abstract title and Author line

      • Author line: Centered, presenting author bolded and first and last name spelled out. All other authors not bolded and use first name initial and full last name. Use superscript numbers to indicate affiliation.

      • Affiliation line: Centered, 1 line per separate affiliation, no space (refer to example abstract below). Include only university department (if applicable), institution, city and province.

      • Line space between affiliations and body of abstract.

      • Abstract: Use full justification, no indentation in first line, single spaced. Maximum 250 words.

    • Entry Questions (student competition only): Include the following answers in your submission in the body of the email (not part of the abstract attachment):

      • Presenting student full name

      • Degree Program, current semester and full or part time status, years of data (grad or undergrad) on which the abstract is based

      • Supervisor Name and Email 

      • Preferred category (Graduate Oral, Graduate Poster, or Undergraduate Poster)

      • Willingness to accept a spot in another category if first choice cannot be accommodated


The deadline for abstract submission is noon (12:00pm), Friday September 22, 2023. All abstracts for student competition and general categories must be sent to:

OPMC Presentation Coordinator,

Example OPMC Submission:

In submission email:

Student name: Jenny Liu

Degree Information: MSc. In Environmental Sciences, Semester 5, full time, 2 years graduate data

Supervisor Name and email: Dr. Rebecca Hallett (

Preferred category: Graduate oral

Willing to accept another spot? Yes


In attached MS Word document (no PDFs!):


When and where: Building a population dynamics model to understand outbreaks of an invasive midge

Jenny Liu1 , B. Mori2 , R. Weiss2 , O. Olfert2 , J. Newman3 , and R. Hallett1

1 School of Environmental Sciences, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON

2 Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saskatoon, SK

3 Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON


The presence of swede midge (Contarinia nasturtii Kieffer), an invasive insect from Eurasia, has caused a decline of over 60% of Ontario’s canola acreage since 2011. If unchecked, it may spread into the Canadian prairies and have grave ramifications for Canada’s $26.7 billion canola industry. New Ontario-specific swede midge development information were used to build a population dynamics model for reliable forecasting of swede midge emergence. Iterative changes were then made to model parameters (e.g. pupal development, diapause breaking temperature, etc.), in accordance with a partial set of robust pheromone trap data from Elora, Ontario. Finally, the model was validated against the remaining Elora trap data. Given several weather scenarios (i.e. warmer, unchanging, cooler), the model accurately predicts economically-damaging peaks of swede midge emergence throughout the growing season. The model uses long-term, regional climate data to provide a better understanding of the conditions under which midge outbreaks occur. This information may help mitigate future outbreaks and economic damage caused by this invasive midge.



Entrants will be informed of their acceptance into the competition or conference within two weeks of the submission deadline. Successful participants will be expected to register for the conference upon notification of their acceptance. Students will receive follow up emails from the judging coordinator with additional instructions and deadlines. Failure to respond to these emails promptly and/or follow all instructions will also reduce the student’s score in the competition and may affect their continued acceptance in the competition.



  • Presentations must be 12 minutes in length + 3 minutes for questions and discussion

  • Use Power Point format. To avoid incompatibility problems, limited use of animation is recommended.

  • Competitors will be required to send a PDF copy of their presentation to the judging coordinator a few days prior to the conference to help facilitate judging.

  • Bring a copy of your presentation on a USB memory stick to the conference.



  • Posters must be 4’ (height) x 3’ (width), portrait format. The header should include the title, authors and institution where the work was conducted. Photos of the student presenting the poster also can be included on the right side of the header.

  • Student competitors must be present at the poster during the designated judging time and for the second half of the lunch break.

  • For the student competition only, a PDF copy of your poster must be sent to the judging coordinator by email ( 1 week prior to the conference so judges can review poster content in advance. Failure to submit a copy of your poster by this time will result in disqualification from the competition.

  • Posters can be set up on the board displaying your assigned Poster Number beginning at 8:00 am on November 7 and must remain in place until afternoon coffee is over. Any posters not claimed at the end of the conference will be removed and discarded by organizers unless other arrangements have been made.

General Poster
Stuent Competition
OPMC Submission Guidelines
Post Submissin Requirements
Oral Presentaton Format
Poster Presentation Format

Download Abstract Submission Guidelines

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