Media releases

Here you can find the media releases of the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig. Please note, that all images contained in the media releases are for use in connection with the press release, exclusively. For any other usage purposes, please contact the Media and Communications department (

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Outdoor activities such as visiting natural areas, here the Ariège Regional Park in France, play a key role in defining our relationship with nature and how we protect it.  (Picture: : Antoine Bel (license CC-BY-4.0))
14.12.2022 | Media Release, sDiv, TOP NEWS, Macroecology and Society

Meta-analysis of scientific literature shows decline of interactions with nature due to growing urbanisation, but systematic studies are rare  › more

A group of the Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinereus) in their tidal habitat of the Sundarban mangrove forest in Bangladesh. (Picture: Sandeep Sharma)
12.12.2022 | TOP NEWS, Biodiversity Conservation, Media Release, iDiv

Report by Dr. Sandeep Sharma, Researcher of the Biodiversity Conservation research group at iDiv and MLU, and lead author of a new publication in Ecology and Evolution  › more

Citizen scientists at the river Prießnitz near Dresden (Picture: Julia von Gönner)
08.12.2022 | Research, TOP NEWS, Ecosystem Services, iDiv, Media Release, UFZ News

Study shows: citizen science can, indeed, be an option to assess the ecological state of smaller streams  › more

A historical collector’s piece in the library of the Haussknecht Herbarium (Picture: Jan-Peter Kasper, University of Jena)
27.11.2022 | TOP NEWS, Media Release, iDiv Members

Jena Senckenberg Institute of Plant Form and Function strengthens collection-based biodiversity research  › more

<em>NaturaConnect</em> will focus on six case studies to test and refine their approaches and inform local ongoing conservation efforts. One is the Carpathian-Danube region. (Picture: Ante Gugić)
10.11.2022 | TOP NEWS, Biodiversity Conservation, Media Release

International project NaturaConnect brings together the knowledge on how to protect biodiversity in Europe  › more

Land-use changes such as deforestation and grassland conversion are not only the main cause of global biodiversity loss, they are also responsible for about a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions. (Picture: Adobe Stock)
10.11.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, iDiv Members

Researchers rank drivers of global biodiversity change  › more

Study area of the NutNet experiment in Jena (Picture: Anne Ebeling)
24.10.2022 | Biodiversity Synthesis, TOP NEWS, Physiological Diversity, Media Release

Researchers find the processes behind species decline due to nutrient inputs  › more

The results demonstrated the potential of using citizen science data e.g. from iNaturalist to help map plant traits on a global scale. (Picture: Tony Iwane)
20.10.2022 | iDiv Members, Media Release, TOP NEWS

iNaturalist app users play a significant role in helping researchers create global maps of plant traits  › more

The cornflower or bachelor's button (<em>Centaurea cyanus</em>) has been among the &ldquo;losers&rdquo;; its population has declined considerably over the past 100 years. (Picture: A. Künzelmann/UFZ)
19.10.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, iDiv Members

Researchers evaluate plant population data between 1927 and 2020  › more

Black Locust (<em>Robinia pseudocacia</em>) is a tree native to North America that has been introduced in all continents. European empires have played a major role in its introduction and spread.  (Picture: Franz Essl)
17.10.2022 | TOP NEWS, Media Release, iDiv Members

The movement of species around the globe has lasting impacts on biodiversity and human livelihoods far into the future  › more

The soils of this pine forest in Seville were included in the study. (Picture: Manuel Delgado Baquerizo)
12.10.2022 | Media Release, Experimental Interaction Ecology, TOP NEWS

New study published in Nature  › more

Tropical deforestation causes widespread loss of biodiversity and carbon stocks. (Picture: Amazônia Real from Manaus AM, Brasil, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
01.10.2022 | Media Release, Macroecology and Society, TOP NEWS

Poorly defined land rights increase deforestation, but private land rights must go hand in hand with strict environmental policies.  › more

Iberian wolf. (Picture: Adobe Stock)
29.09.2022 | Research, Media Release, TOP NEWS, Biodiversity Conservation

Recent expansions mean little more than a stabilisation of the species  › more

One of the most impressive examples of woodiness on the Canary Islands is offered by Wildpret's viper's bugloss (<em>Echium wildpretii subsp. Wildpretii)</em>. The species is found exclusively on the high flanks of the Teide volcano on Tenerife. (Picture: Frederic Lens/ Naturalis Biodiversity Centre in Leiden)
07.09.2022 | Media Release, sDiv, TOP NEWS

Islands act as natural laboratories of evolution  › more

This meadow in Romania is one of the most species-rich regions on earth - in 2009, a research team found 98 plant species here. (Picture: Jürgen Dengler)
01.09.2022 | iDiv Members, Media Release, TOP NEWS, Research

Steppes of Eastern Europe harbour a similar number of plant species as Amazon rainforest regions  › more

A nature conservation ranger of the Saxon Switzerland National Park, Germany, shows his colleague a forest area where he had discovered an illegal fireplace. (Picture: Hanspeter Mayr, Saxon Switzerland National Park)
15.08.2022 | Media Release, Evolutionary and Anthropocene Ecology, TOP NEWS

Effectiveness of biodiversity conservation in national parks is associated with socioeconomic conditions  › more

The home screen of LifeGate shows the full diversity of life at a glance. Users can zoom in at any given area until they reach the species level.&nbsp; (Picture: LifeGate by Martin Freiberg)
27.07.2022 | TOP NEWS, Media Release, iDiv Members

New digital map displays full diversity of life through thousands of photos  › more

The following photos show examples of the region investigated in the study as well as animals living there. Here: Central Andean (Yungas) Montane &amp; Upper Montane Humid Forest. (Picture: Pat Comer, NatureServe)
19.07.2022 | Biodiversity Conservation, Media Release, TOP NEWS

New research offers a pathway to achieving the 30 by 30 target using ecosystem diversity across four South American countries  › more

The scientific literature only covers a small part of the species diversity. Insect species, especially those in the species-rich tropical regions, have been very little researched and are hardly considered in biodiversity assessments. (Picture: Alexa Schmitz / pixabay)
18.07.2022 | Media Release, Experimental Interaction Ecology

New experts survey considerably extends the global biodiversity knowledge by underrepresented species groups and regions  › more

The grasshopper sparrow (<em>Ammodramus savannarum</em>), a grassland specialist, has not fully adjusted its distribution and abundance to changing climatic conditions. (Picture: Adobe Stock)
14.07.2022 | Biodiversity Synthesis, TOP NEWS, Media Release

Climate decoupling particularly prominent among habitat specialists  › more

Identification panels help to distinguish the species. (Picture: UFZ)
08.07.2022 | Ecosystem Services, Media Release, TOP NEWS

Leipzig citizen science project “VielFalterGarten” promotes insect diversity in the city and invites people to actively participate in the protection of butterflies  › more

The following photos show different types of agricultural land use. Here: Grassland near Melleryd, Sweden. (Picture: Sebastian Lakner)
30.06.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, Ecosystem Services

Over 300 scientists make recommendations on how to improve the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy  › more

First author of the study Dr Will Overholt and senior author Prof Kirsten K&uuml;sel taking samples. (Picture: Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena)
29.06.2022 | Media Release, iDiv Members, TOP NEWS

Researchers discover microbes in pitch-dark aquifers as important primary producers  › more

Dr Anton Potapov, head of a new junior research group at iDiv and Leipzig University (Picture: D. Sandmann)
24.06.2022 | iDiv, Media Release, TOP NEWS

iDiv and Leipzig University get new junior research group: “Soil Biological Diversity and Functions”  › more

The Jena Experiment, funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), started in 2002 and is one of the longest-running biodiversity experiments in Europe. (Picture: Jena Experiment)
09.06.2022 | Media Release, Experimental Interaction Ecology, iDiv Members, TOP NEWS

Drought-exposure history improves the recovery of grassland communities from subsequent drought  › more

Dr Michael Gerth, head of the new Junior Research Group at iDiv and MLU (Picture: Stefan Bernhardt/iDiv)
06.06.2022 | iDiv, Media Release, Symbiont Evolution, TOP NEWS

Junior Research Group 'Symbiont Evolution' started at iDiv and MLU  › more

The Alpine mountain grasshopper (<em>Miramella alpina</em>) has so far been unaffected by changes in climate and land use. This grasshopper species, which is widespread throughout Europe at higher altitudes, has a stable occurrence in the Bavarian Alps, which has hardly changed in recent decades. (Picture: E. K. Engelhardt / TUM)
03.06.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, Ecosystem Services

40 years of conservation data: Researchers show population trends of native insects   › more

Given the almost complete absence of chimpanzee fossils, the genetic information from current populations is crucial for describing their evolutionary history. (Picture: Pixabay)
02.06.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, Evolutionary and Anthropocene Ecology

New genomic tools shed light on the evolutionary history of chimpanzees and contribute to their conservation  › more

Turkey vulture (<em>Cathartes aura</em>) drying under the sunlight in the floodplain <em>v&aacute;rzea forests</em> of Mamirau&aacute; Sustainable Development Reserve (MSDR), Central Amazonia (Picture: Research Group of Felid Ecology and Conservation in Amazonia, Mamirauá Institute for Sustainable Development (
01.06.2022 | TOP NEWS, Theory in Biodiversity Science, Media Release

Large-scale use of camera trap data can help improve wildlife conservation  › more

Older siblings may reduce the likelihood that their younger brothers or sisters develop behavioural problems.&nbsp; (Picture: Federica Amici)
31.05.2022 | TOP NEWS, Media Release, iDiv Members

If expectant mothers are exposed to stress their child can develop behavioural problems - but less often with siblings  › more

Gardening can make an important contribution to the population development of plant species. The grape hyacinth (<em>Muscari botryoides</em>) is listed as "vulnerable" on the German Red List, but is often used as an ornamental and has increased its population by 65 percent in recent decades. (Picture: Wikimedia Commons)
18.05.2022 | Biodiversity Conservation, TOP NEWS, Media Release

Researchers recommend urban conservation gardening measures to reverse horticultural trends  › more

Doctoral researchers of the Research Training Group during fieldwork in the BEF-China experiment. (Picture: Rémy Beugnon)
09.05.2022 | iDiv, Media Release, iDiv Members, TOP NEWS

DFG extends funding for the international research training group TreeDì  › more

The large, woody fruits of the <em>Manicaria saccifera</em> palm that depend on large animals for their dispersal. (Picture: John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew)
29.04.2022 | TOP NEWS, Media Release, Evolution and Adaptation

Effects of missing large herbivores on food plants still detectable today  › more

Geographic distribution of threatened reptiles. Reptile species are considered threatened if ranked as Vulnerable, Endangered, or Critically Endangered by The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species&trade;. Species richness refers to the number of different species that occur in an area. Warmer (redder) colors denote a larger number of threatened reptile species.&nbsp; (Picture: Cox, N. and Young, B. E., et al. Global reptile assessment shows commonality of tetrapod conservation needs. Nature (2022))
27.04.2022 | Biodiversity Conservation, TOP NEWS, Media Release

Reptiles likely benefit from efforts to save other animals  › more

Nature observations by citizen scientists. (Picture: Detlef Metzer)
26.04.2022 | UFZ News, Ecosystem Services, TOP NEWS, Media Release

Presentation of the Strategy and Citizen Science Festival on 29 April in Berlin  › more

<em>Caddisfly larva</em> (Picture: Julia von Gönner)
12.04.2022 | TOP NEWS, Media Release, Ecosystem Services

Nationwide measurement campaign of the citizen science project FLOW starts  › more

From left: Prof Dr Beate A. Sch&uuml;cking, Rector of the University of Leipzig (until March 2022); Burkhard Jung, Mayor of the City of Leipzig; Prof Dr Christian Wirth , award winner; Prof Dr Eva In&eacute;s Obergfell, Rector of the University of Leipzig; Prof Dr Hans Wiesmeth, President of the Saxon Academy of Sciences at Leipzig (Picture: Swen Reichhold, Bild: SAW)
07.04.2022 | iDiv, Media Release, iDiv Members, TOP NEWS

iDiv delighted at award for founding director  › more

Earthworms are considered essential ecosystem engineers underground. Researchers from iDiv and Leipzig University have now shown that they also play a major role in shaping aboveground communities.&nbsp; (Picture: V. Gutekunst)
30.03.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, Experimental Interaction Ecology

Researchers recommend taking underappreciated factors for biodiversity loss into account  › more

Different groups of insects, e.g., beetles and butterflies, may show similar abundance trends in one place, but dissimilar trends in other places. The photo shows a longhorn beetle (<em>Leptura quadrifasciata</em>) and a map (<em>Araschnia levana</em>). (Picture: Oliver Thier)
23.02.2022 | Biodiversity Synthesis, TOP NEWS, Media Release

Only weak trend correlations between different insect groups  › more

Collage of plant species that are range-restricted to Europe but threatened in at least one country, with some of them being globally threatened. (Picture: Vlaev, Dimiter in Peev, D. et al. (eds) (2015): Red Data Book of the Republic of Bulgaria. Vol. 1. Plants and Fungi. MoEW & BAS, Sofia [Single inset drawings; compiled by Staude, I.].
07.02.2022 | Biodiversity Conservation, Media Release, TOP NEWS

Study closes gaps in the risk of extinction of plant species  › more

Identical twins are jumping from rocks in a forest on hiking in Slovenia. (Picture: _jure / Adobe Photo Stock)
03.02.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, Ecosystem Services

Identical twins’ nature experiences more similar than fraternal twins but local environment also key  › more

The "cry for help" has been demonstrated for the first time in the natural habitat - in the canopy of the Leipzig floodplain forest. (Picture: Steffen Schellhorn)
18.01.2022 | Media Release, TOP NEWS, Molecular Interaction Ecology

Chemical "cry for help" from trees verified in a natural habitat for the first time  › more

The model area Oder Delta (Picture: Solvin Zankl / Rewilding Europe)
17.01.2022 | iDiv Members, TOP NEWS, Media Release, Biodiversity Conservation, UFZ News

BMBF research project starts in the Oder Delta model area  › more

(Picture: A. Tille)
14.01.2022 | iDiv, TOP NEWS, Media Release

Environment ministers from Saxony-Anhalt, Thuringia and Saxony discuss regional biodiversity protection measures  › more

Klimatische Unterschiede ver&auml;ndern die Wuchsh&ouml;he von Pflanzenarten entlang der Breitengrade. Die &Ouml;konomie der Pflanzen zeigt diese Gradienten aber nicht. (Picture: S. Michalski)
23.12.2021 | iDiv Members, Media Release, TOP NEWS

New findings could improve scientific Earth system models  › more

Overhanging branch of pedunculate oak due to the 2018 hotter drought. (Picture: Rolf A. Engelmann)
20.12.2021 | TOP NEWS, iDiv Members, Media Release

Decrease in growth due to drought stress in 2018 and 2019  › more

Graphical illustration of tree species responses in mixed-species forests to contrasting climatic conditions. Tree species grow differently in dry (year 2) or wet (year 3) years but this asynchronous growth stabilizes the productivity of the forest community. (Picture: Florian Schnabel)
17.12.2021 | Media Release, iDiv Members, TOP NEWS

Species richness stabilises forests against extreme climate conditions  › more

The insect was caught by the researchers and students during an excursion to the floodplain forest. (Picture: Lisa Hahn)
13.12.2021 | TOP NEWS, iDiv, Media Release, iDiv Members

Extremely rare insect species discovered during a field trip  › more

Insects are the focus of several Citizen Science projects. The photo shows a European peacock. (Picture: Gabriele Rada / iDiv)
10.12.2021 | Ecosystem Services, Media Release, TOP NEWS

Cross-country study on the motivation of citizen scientists  › more

In the Alps, plant communities on nutrient-poor sites, such as this calcareous grassland, are increasingly pressured by immigrating nitrophilous species but have not yet been displaced. Species numbers are actually increasing here at present. In the long term, however, they will decline, the researchers assume. (Picture: Harald Pauli/ÖAW)
10.12.2021 | sDiv, TOP NEWS, Media Release, Biodiversity Conservation

New study shows: Europe's grasslands, forests and mountain summits are becoming increasingly similar in species composition  › more

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