I studied biology at the Universities of Freiburg i.Br. (Germany), St. Petersburg (Russia), and Frankfurt a.M. (Germany) where I graduated with a diploma on the stopover ecology of migrating waders in Central Kazakhstan. I continued with my research interest in animal ecology as PhD student at the University of Groningen (Netherlands) with a thesis work on flexibility and constraints in migration and breeding of the barnacle goose. This work aimed at linking migration and breeding patterns at population and even individual level. It included comparative research on life-histories of three populations along the East Atlantic Flyway (i.e. along a latitudinal gradient). Research on the acquisition and utilisation of endogenous nutrient and energy stores played a central role in this (PhD) and in my previous (MSc) work, and it connected me to my following work as post-doc at the CNRS/IPHC-DEPE in Strasbourg (France, 2008-2011). There I took a deeper interest in physiological systems employed by organisms when dealing with a fluctuating environment by studying thermoregulatory responses of growing king penguins to nutritional stress and microclimate.
Since 2012 I have returned my focus to the barnacle goose study system (Marie Curie postdoc at LU until 2014). Over the past decades this traditionally arctic-breeding migrant species has successfully established temperate-breeding non-migratory populations. I am investigating behavioural and physiological adaptations allowing these animals to cope with such contrasting modes of life and environments by studying, among other, physiological rates, pathogen pressure and immune defence. Work at the interfaces of ecology-physiology-behaviour interests me most, in an effort to further our understanding of factors determining animal distributions.
For more information visit my profile at ResearchGate