The Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology is a biological research institute for the study of animal behavior. Ethology (or Behavioral Biology) is an integrative field that addresses questions about how and why animals do what they do. Since spring 2015 it is also the headquaters of the Österreichischen Vogelwarte/Austrian Ornithological Centre (AOC).

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Update // Coronavirus containment measures: We are currently closed

Due to current circumstances, the research institutes on Wilhelminenberg remain closed until further notice. In urgent cases, please contact the Secretariat

Tel. 01-250 77 - 7900

From there you will be connected to the responsible person.


Postponed! 30th conference of the Specialist Group Woodpeckers of the German Ornithological Society, 30. Oct. bis 1. Nov. 2020, Vienna

Great spotted woodpecker female (Photo © Johannes Hloch)
great spotted woodpecker female 8

UPDATE: The conference, originally planned for late March 2020, was postponed due to the Corona/Covid-19 crisis. It is expected to take place from October 30th to November 1st, 2020 in Vienna.

The SIG Woodpeckers - the official name of the woodpecker working group - is a loose consortium of people with an interest in the woodpecker family. The Specialist Group unites specialists and lay people interested in woodpeckers. The purpose of the Group is to have a platform for the exchange of research results, to discuss them and to make suggestions for further work. In addition, networking of people interested in woodpeckers and forests is important to the woodpecker group.

The motto of the 30th conference will be "Woodpeckers as culture followers and urban residents".  


More info and registration 9

(Web editor, 16 March 2020)



A sense of beauty among animals

The beautiful feather display of a male peacock impresses both female peacocks and humans (Photo Venkat Mangudi, Wikimedia Commons)
Portrait photo of a male peacock displaying his feathers 10

Not only people, but animals too, have a sense of aesthetics. In a current WWTF project, Leonida Fusani from the Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology of the Vetmeduni Vienna and the Department of Cognitive Biology at the University of Vienna and fellow researchers are investigating the role that beauty perceptions play in humans and animals in evolution. For example, birds of paradise prepare a carefully decorated stage in accordance with their aesthetic sensibility for their mating dance, on which they then perform an impressive show for their potential partners. Peacocks shake their iridescent feathers and turn their tail into a giant wheel to attract females.  So a sense of aesthetics thus does not seem to be reserved for humans.

The WWTF project "Comparative aesthetics" investigates the evolutionary function and common roots of the search for beauty in humans and other species, such as birds.

More info 11 (in German)

(Web editor, 12 December 2019)



News Archive... 12



Savoyenstraße 1a, A-1160 Vienna
Tel:   +43 (1) 25077-7900
Fax:  +43 (1) 25077-7941

How to find us 13


Recovered a bird ring?

Bird rings of various sizes

Please report your recovery here 14.


Wilhelminenberg Seminar

Every Wednesday during the academic semester the "Wilhelminenberg Seminar" takes place at our house, a scientific colloquium where leading scientists from around the world present their latest research.  

Seminar programme 15


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