PostDoc - Synthesis

Dr. Ulrike Schlägel

University of Potsdam

Plant Ecology and Nature Conservation

Am Mühlenberg 3

14476 Potsdam - Golm


+49 (0)331 - 977 6263

ulrike.schlaegel [at]



I have a passion for both math and ecology, and I combine the two by addressing theoretical questions in ecology with the help of models and by developing new mathematical-statistical methods for ecologists.


I work at the interface of movement, population, and community ecology. I am interested in fine-scale movement processes of animals (e.g. resource selection, navigation, memory-based movement, interactions between individuals), and how these affect the population- and community-level (e.g. population dynamics, species coexistence, biodiversity).




Animal movement can affect biodiversity along many routes. Fine-scale movement behaviour allows spatio-temporal segregation of competitors and may thus facilitate coexistence. Dispersing individuals connect populations and maintain genetic diversity. Differences in mobility can give species an edge over otherwise superior competitors. Futhermore, moving animals provide important sevices within ecosystems as 'mobile links', transporting nutrients and genetic material (e.g. seeds, pollen) and providing important processes (e.g. disturbance via grazing). These mechanisms are threatenend by environmental changes, such as human-induced changes in landscape structure and habitat, climate change or the introduction of invasive species.


My objective is to develop a theoretical concept that will allow us to study the various links between movement processes and biodiversity within one framework and to identify links that are particularly vulnerable to environmental changes or have a high potential for buffering against negative impacts.


In addition, I develop an individual-based model for movement-mediated coexistence mechanisms, linking fine-scale movement behaviour of interacting species to population-level coexistence patterns. I use this model to understand under which conditions (e.g. environmental configuration, resource availability) trade-offs in movement-related behavioural strategies can facilitate coexistence.


To support data analysis in BioMove, I develop new statistical tools for the analysis of multi-species tracking data to decipher small-scale behavioural interactions between individuals. These methods will help to utlilize the dynamic spatiotemporal dimensions of movement data and to empirically test hypotheses on movement-mediated coexistence mechanisms.


You may also check out my profile at Uni Potsdam.

For a most up-to-date list of my publications, have a look at my researchgate profile.


Research Training Group

DFG-GRK 2118/1


Prof. Dr. Florian Jeltsch

jeltsch [at]


Deputy Speaker:

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Niels Blaum blaum [at]



Merlin Schäfer
merlin.schaefer [at]


biomove-rtg [at]

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Florian Jeltsch