ESSA Young Entomologists’ Travel Grants

As part of its aim to promote all aspects of entomology, the Entomological Society of Southern Africa (ESSA) initiated the Young Entomologists’ Travel Grants scheme in 2018. The grants are to support young ESSA members from southern Africa to present research results at international scientific meetings or workshops with entomological relevance, or gain valuable entomological skills and experience by visiting an international research group.

By doing so, the ESSA hopes to support the development of professional entomologists, and to broaden the range of skills and global relevance of research undertaken in southern Africa. Each year, a number of ESSA Young Entomologists’ Travel Grants, each to the value of up to R25,000, may be awarded.

Download the application pdf here with more information.


ESSA logo B

ESSA Young Entomologists’ Essay Prize

The topic for 2020 is: “My creature, my passion”

As part of its aim to promote all aspects of entomology, the Entomological Society of Southern Africa (ESSA) initiated the Young Entomologists’ Essay Prize in 2014. Essays should be original and thought provoking.

Reference to published sources of information should be kept to a minimum but are necessary when claiming a fact or providing evidence and examples. The essays must be written in English and should be between 1000-1250 words in length. Numbered referencing should be used for in-text citations. A list of cited references should be included but does not contribute to the word limit.

The winning entrant will receive a certificate and be awarded a cash prize of R2000. The winning essay will be featured in Rostrum, the newsletter of the ESSA. Readers of Rostrum will be invited to respond to the essay in the following issue.

– Only one prize will be made in each year that it is available.
– It is understood that the winning entry contains the views and opinions of the winning entrant. These views and opinions will not necessarily reflect those of the ESSA.


The topic from 2020 is: “My creature, my passion”. In this essay, we encourage people to describe the insect that they are interested in and to produce a scientific essay that would be of interest to the broad entomological community.


Entrants for the ESSA Young Entomologists’ Essay Prize must satisfy ALL of the following criteria. Entrants must be:

– Paid-up student or ordinary members of the ESSA.
– Residents, or registered as a student or postdoctoral associate/fellow, in a country within the Southern African Development Community (SADC; i.e., Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe).
– Thirty-five (35) years of age or younger on the closing date for entries.


Entries will be assessed by the ESSA Executive Committee, who may also call upon other members of the ESSA to contribute to the assessment. Assessment will be based on the following criteria:

– Comprehension of the topic
– Clear placement of the argument within the context of Southern Africa
– Originality of ideas
– Persuasiveness and coherency of the argument
– Appropriate and effective use of facts, evidence or examples
– Grammar and spelling



Submit entries to the Rostrum editor, Dr Shune Oliver, by email:


ESSA logo B

Rostrum Photography Competition

This is the first announcement of the 2020 photographic competition. The theme of this year’s competition is “the world in my back garden”. Entries are open until November 30, 2020

Entries are to be sent to Shune Oliver (, but the entries will be judged by the Rostrum editorial committee as well as the ESSA executive committee.

Four overall winners will be chosen, and each will be featured on a Rostrum cover. Each winner will receive a cash prize of R1000.

Winners may not enter subsequent photographs, but other entrants may enter as many times as they like. Entrants must be paid members of the ESSA.

By entering this competition, photographers automatically give permission to the ESSA to use their images in Rostrum, as well as for display at the XXII Scientific Congress of the ESSA in 2021. Neither the ESSA, nor Rostrum will use the image for financial gain and the image remains the property of the photographer.

Please include your full name and organisational affiliation within the email body. A brief description of the subject matter of the image(s) should also be supplied, including insect identity where possible, to explain how they address the competition theme.

Please save each submitted entry as follows: First name Surname_photo name, e.g., Jane Smith_honey bee1.jpeg