The 8th International bio-logging science symposium

Tokyo, March 2024

We are excited to announce that the 8th International Bio-Logging Science Symposium (BLS8) will be held from March 4-8, 2024, in Tokyo, Japan!

The first International Bio-Logging Science Symposium was held in Tokyo in March 2003. The 2003 Symposium coined the term ‘Bio-Logging’ and spurred international collaborations among scientists working mainly on marine animals. Nearly 20 years have passed since then, and six BLS Symposia have been held across the globe (St. Andrews, Pacific Grove, Hobart, Strasbourg, Konstanz, and Honolulu).

‘Bio-Logging Science’ has now flourished across diverse research fields, not only in marine but also in terrestrial research fields. The recent coronavirus pandemic has compromised our research activities in the remote field sites, but it has also inspired the development of enhanced community-wide collaborations such as COVID-19 Bio-Logging Initiatives. It is timely to hold the 8th BLS Symposium in Tokyo again to reflect on our achievements during the last 20 years, and to look ahead to the future of Bio-Logging Science!

COvid-19 bio-logging initiative

The International Bio-Logging Society, together with several partner organizations, has launched the COVID-19 Bio-Logging Initiative to investigate global wildlife responses to altered levels of human activity during the pandemic. The ultimate goal of the Initiative is to use bio-logging data collected before, during, and after the COVID-19 lockdown to advance our understanding of human–wildlife interactions and to inform global efforts to foster sustainable human–wildlife coexistence. We have outlined our vision for this work programme on “anthropause” effects in a recent open-access comment article.

Following an open call for collaboration, we now have a global consortium of >600 partners investigating how animals responded to pandemic lockdowns, which is now endorsed as a UN Ocean Decade project. In a remarkable collaborative effort, the community has pooled >1 billion location fixes for ~13,000 tagged animals across ~200 terrestrial, aerial, and aquatic species in shared bio-logging databases, such as Movebank, enabling the launch of a rich portfolio of coordinated sub-projects.