Each year, the monthly magazine Eos and SciMingo vzw awards the best hard science thesis with the Eos Prize. Carl-Victor Deweer (UGent) won this year’s prize of €1,000. In his master’s thesis, he investigated whether we could use fly larvae to clean dung in chicken houses. These fry contain a lot of protein and fat, and can be processed into a food source for fish and poultry. Certain parts can be used in the chemical and medical sector.
100 million kilo larvae
The current method of broiler breeding is to fatten the chicks for 6 weeks in a broiler house. Then they go to the slaughterhouse. Then the coop is cleaned and empty for two weeks to start breeding again,” explains Dewer. He showed it was interesting to leave chicken manure for another week for the larvae to grow on. The only thing a poultry farmer would have to do is moisten and mix the manure. If these are applied The new method Across Belgium, 100 million kilograms of caterpillars can be grown.
Less surplus of manure
The method still needs further testing, because at the moment the research has only been carried out under experimental conditions. The legislation also currently prohibits larval breeding on chicken manure, as the impact of larvae on biosecurity and food safety needs further investigation. Dewer hopes that this will happen soon: “The cultivation of fry in poultry houses has only advantages: less truck traffic, less surplus manure, fewer buildings and infrastructure, …”.
Dreaming of caterpillars
“A great example of circular cattle breeding. The thesis is very original, interesting and contains a lot of special research,” said the Eos editors. He chose the work from 63 entries. The public can also use a poll to determine the winner by voting for one of the five candidates. 2,600 votes were counted for a quarter of the total vote. The winner gets no less than 628.
Brilliant award for Deweer who threw himself into his research with passion. “Sometimes I was counting thousands of maggots until late at night, so I kept counting maggots in my dreams even at night.” He receives €1,000 and also sees an article about his research appearing in Eos magazine.
The following four awards were also awarded during the award ceremony at Korda Hasselt:
The main prize, the Flemish Thesis Prize 2021, goes to Kamiel Debeuckelaere (KU Leuven). He developed an innovative robotic flower for bee research.
Klasseprijs goes to Dries Mariën (UGent) for his master’s thesis on supervision of young teachers.
The mtech+ award goes to Judith Hanen and Aniline Poli (UGent) with a master’s thesis on “Which is more interesting from an environmental point of view: renewal or reconstruction?”
The BA award goes to Angela Janssen (PXL University of Applied Sciences) for “Special Approach to Resuscitation of COVID-19 Patients”
More information: scriptieprijs.be/uitreiking2021
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