Research Themes

Our research focuses on the study of evolutionary and ecological processes in natural populations, particularly in animal groups. The fundamental issues under study are on one hand population dynamics (with a particular interest in dispersal and host-parasite interactions) and on the other hand the evolutionary basis of diversity in life-history strategies and phenotypic variation.

An important research theme is applied population biology including wildlife management and conservation, pest and invasive species management, and ecology of infections. Depending on the research question, different model systems are used in temperate as well as tropical ecosystems.

The main model species are terrestrial vertebrates, in particular small mammals and birds, and to a lesser extent insects and other invertebrates.

Methodologically, we combine field studies, often involving extensive longitudinal data, with the use of molecular tools, biostatistics, GIS and mathematical modelling.
In this general framework a number of research lines can be identified which have a number of obvious cross-links between them: