Biodiversity

Although freshwaters cover less than one per cent of the earth’s surface, they are some of the most species-rich habitats on our planet – so far at any rate. After all, rivers and lakes are experiencing a rapid decline in biological diversity. And yet it is still unclear what this loss means for our well-being in the long term. One important objective of our research is therefore to identify measures that enable us to protect the biodiversity of our freshwaters as effectively as possible. We investigate the causes, draw up forecasts relating to changes, and pool our expertise in biodiversity research and in knowledge-based environmental protection. Collaborating with international partners, we also collect global data on biodiversity in freshwaters, creating a unique foundation to ensure their protection.

Related News

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Foundation of the "Alliance for Freshwater Life"

Experts from all over the world have developed the basis for a global network for improving research, protection and public outreach in the field of freshwater biodiversity.
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The Microbiome of our Earth

A huge international research collaboration catalogued the planet’s microbial diversity at unprecedented scale and compiled the world's first reference database of bacteria colonising our planet.
press release

Flagship species could help protect freshwaters

83 per cent of all the world’s threatened freshwater species occur in the same areas as the “imposing” freshwater species examined within the study – all of which are potential ambassadors for their ecosystem.

Related Projects

GLANCE

Climate change affects not only air temperature and precipitation, but also our streams and rivers: water temperature is rising, river flow characteristics are changing, oxygen concentration is sinking, while nutrient concentrations increase. This is not without consequence for the plants and animals living in freshwaters.
Contact person
Sonja Jähnig
Department
(Dept. 2) Ecosystem Research
Start
08/2014
End
04/2019
Topic

EU regulation on invasive species: suggestions for species to be listed as being of Union concern, and prioritization of their pathways

A new EU regulation to address invasive species entered into force at the beginning of 2015. IGB is involved in a project run by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) in which a method is being further developed to identify invasive species that are of particular concern in Germany in the context of this EU regulation.
Contact person
Jonathan Jeschke
Wolf-Christian Saul
Department
(Dept. 2) Ecosystem Research
Start
07/2015
End
10/2017
Topic

OSCAR

Woody riparian buffer strips along rivers have widely been used mainly to reduce nutrient and fine sediment input from agricultural areas but potentially offer many more ecosystem services (e.g. habitat provision increasing biodiversity, shading and temperature regulation, mitigating climate change effects).
Contact person
Markus Venohr
Department
(Dept. 1) Ecohydrology
Start
03/2017
End
02/2020
Topic

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