|Phone: +49 521 106 2702|
|Since 1998||Professor (Animal Ecology, University Bielefeld)
|1993-1998||Assistant (LMU Munich)
|1990-1993||Leader for aquatic ecology (Fraunhofer Institute: ecotoxicology and environmental chemistry)
|1979-1985||Diplom (MSc) in Biology LMU Munich
Diversity, Taxonomy, Benthic Food Web, Predator-Prey, Life-cycle, Ecotoxicology
Our group examines trophic interactions in benthic food webs and quantifies transfers of energy from microbes (e.g. bacteria, fungi) to meiofauna (e.g. nematodes, micro-crustaceans) and macrofauna (e.g. chironomids, flatworms), up to benthivorous fishes. Ingestion was assessed using predator-prey functional responses and analyses of gut contents. Assimilation was assessed based on stable isotopic analyses and stable isotopic probing. We use Bayesian mixing models and structural equation modelling to integrate our empirical data into the framework of trophic dynamics in freshwater ecosystems.
Diversity patterns and community ecology in freshwater ecosystems is another topic of our group. Taxonomic identification of the most abundant and species richest group of zoobenthos, the nematodes, is carried out both by “traditional” microscopic identification and molecular-based techniques to assess the effects of biotic and abiotic forcing on the community structure of free-living nematodes.