Since December 1, 2021, the Research Institute for Wildlife Ecology (FIWI) of the Vetmeduni has a new head. Melanie Dammhahn is now in charge of managing the research institute on Vienna's Wilhelminenberg. Research on the ecology of the individual behaviour of mammals is particularly close to the heart of the native German scientist and experienced biologist.
Melanie Dammhahn completed her diploma studies in biology at the Eberhard-Karl University in Tübingen, Germany and the University of Sussex, U.K. This was followed by doctoral studies at the Georg-August University and at the German Primate Center, Leibniz Institute for Primate Research in Göttingen. In 2020 she completed her habilitation in animal ecology (habilitation thesis: “From individual variation to community structure: patterns, determinants and consequences of within- and between-species variation in behaviour, life-history and ecology”) at the University of Potsdam, where she still works as a private lecturer at the Institute for Biochemistry and Natural Sciences.
In addition to animal and behavioural ecology, Dammhahn's research interests include evolutionary ecology as well as life history theory and community ecology, especially in mammals. Dammhahn's research projects are interdisciplinary and include the areas of behavioural biology, cognition, evolution and ecology. Long-term field studies have taken the biologist to Madagascar and Canada, among other places. Melanie Dammhahn has extensive experience and qualifications in teaching animal and behavioural ecology, nature conservation biology and ecological statistics. From 2017 to 2018 she was a substitute professor for animal ecology at the University of Greifswald.
Melanie Dammhahn is a member of the International Society for Behavioural Ecology (ISBE), the Society for Tropical Ecology (gtö), the German Zoological Society (DZG) and the Ethological Society and the Society for Primatology (GfP).
The individual in focus: where evolution, ecology and ethology meet
Melanie Dammhahn researches the ecology of the individual behavior of mammals. How bravely or shyly an animal behaves determines how it uses its habitat and ultimately how it can keep pace with the rapid changes in habitats. If you compare the city mouse and the country mouse from Aesop's fable, you can see that city mice are street-smart.