Prof. Dr. Carsten F. Dormann

Telefon: +49 761 203-3749
Telefax: +49 761 203-3751
eMail: carsten.dormann@biom.uni-freiburg.de 




Frau Eva Meier

Telefon: +49 761 203-3749 
Telefax: +49 761 203-3751 
eMail: eva.meier@biom.uni-freiburg.de 




Biometrie und Umweltsystemanalyse

Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg

Tennenbacher Straße 4 
79106 Freiburg i. Br.


Sie sind hier: Startseite Mitarbeiter / Staff Dr. Arne Schröder

Dr. Arne Schröder


Dr. Arne Schröder


Department of Biometry and Environmental System Analysis

Tennenbacher Straße 4, 79106 Freiburg, Germany

email: arne.schroeder(a)biom.uni-freiburg.de
phone: +49 761 203-8667
fax: +49 761 203-3751





    Research Interests


    I am an aquatic ecologist and fascinated by all things watery. My research philosophy is based on the conviction that in order to understand aquatic ecosystems, one has to get down to the level of individual organisms. It is the single zooplankters or fish that, through their interactions with each other, create the patterns and dynamics we observe at the level of lake and pond ecosystems. Moreover, organismic interactions depend much on the body size, life history and behaviour of the interacting animals. Hence, my research focuses on intra- and inter-specific variation in phenotypic traits, how individuals adapt their traits to changes in biotic and abiotic environments through plastic and genetic processes, and the impacts of trait-dependent interactions on aquatic populations and food webs.


    Current Projects


    I) Eco-Evolutionary Causes of Ontogenetic Niche Shifts:

    Many aquatic organisms substantially alter their diet and habitat as they grow through their life cycle. Consequently, their trophic interactions and food web position change over their lifetime, which can for example result in size-specific priority effects and alternative stable states. Moreover, ontogenetic niche shifts can make ecosystems susceptible to abrupt irreversible regime shifts in community composition and food web structure. However, while the consequences of ontogenetic niche shifts are increasingly well understood, their ecological and evolutionary causes are not. Hence, I study the plasticity in the timing and occurrence of ontogenetic niche shifts, whether they are obligatory or driven by e.g. relative resource abundance, predation risk, and conspecific densities, or to what extend niche shifts are an individual-level process or a population-level process etc. What interests me in the evolution of ontogenetic niche shifts is the role of subtle adaptations in feeding traits, the food web configuration, and the demographic feedbacks with resource densities. For example I would like to know the answers to questions as, ‘Can the use of different resource over life be related to changes in morphological feeding traits like mouthparts, propelling structures, or body form?’, ‘How do feeding-triggered changes in the relative densities of life stage-specific resources affect the evolution of niche shifts and feeding traits?’, or ‘Does ecosystem productivity affect the evolution of ontogenetic niche shifts?’. I am using the phantom midge Chaoborus as a size-structured, ontogenetically shifting consumer to answer such and other questions regarding the ecological and evolutionary causes of ontogenetic niche shifts.

    II) Diel Vertical Migration in Daphnia spec.:

    As an inducible, behavioural defence trait against visually hunting planktivorous fish, many zooplankton species undergo diel vertical migrations, where they hide in the dark, deep water layers during day but swim upwards during night. Individual daphnids base their depth choice decisions on external, environmental state variables like predation pressure, food availability, or light intensity that all individuals share. Internal, individually varying states related to physiological and morphological traits have received much less attention in their influence on diel vertical migration behaviour. For example, body size and energy reserves can explain partial diel vertical migration, where only some individuals of a population migrate. I am currently testing these lab-based findings with data from lakes. I use diel vertical migration in Daphnia also to test predictions of the theory of dynamic, state-dependent behaviour. For example, I am asking ‘How do temporal changes in relative risks and safe habitat availability affect habitat choice?’, ‘What is the role of labile traits like energy reserves in risk allocation?’, ‘Is risk-taking behaviour plastic and flexible on a short term or more stable over time via links to slower changing traits like energy reserves, embryo number, or life stage?’.


    Curriculum Vitae

    01/2018 - present


    Scientific Employee, University of Freiburg (Germany)

    01/2014 - 12/2017

      IGB and Marie Curie Research Fellow, Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries Berlin (Germany)

    09/2012 - 12/2013

      NERC Researcher, University of Sheffield (United Kingdom)
    08/2009 - 08/2012        

    Swedish Research Council Research Fellow, University of Lund (Sweden) and University of Leeds (United Kingdom)

    07/2008 - 10/2008


    Scientific Employee, University of Umeå (Sweden)

    11/2002 - 06/2008


    PhD Student, University of Umeå (Sweden)

    12/2001 - 09/2002     


    Research Trainee Syngenta AG Basel (Switzerland)

    09/2000 - 11/2001  

    Diploma Biology, University of Freiburg (Germany)


    Selected Publications


    Arlinghaus R, Laskowski K, Alós J, Klefoth T, Monk CT, Nakayama S & Schröder A (2017) Passive gear-induced timidity syndrome in wild fish populations and its potential ecological and managerial implications. Fish & Fisheries 18:360-373.

    Schröder A, Kalinkat G & Arlinghaus R (2016) Individual variation in functional response parameters is explained by body size but not by behavioural types in a poeciliied fish. Oecologia 182:1129-1140.

    Arlinghaus R, Alós J, Klefoth T, Laskowski K, Monk CT, Nakayama S & Schröder A (2016) Consumptive tourism causes timidity, rather than boldness, syndromes: A response to Geffroy et al. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 31:92-94.

    Liess A, Rowe O, Francoeur SN, Guo J, Lange K, Schröder A, Reichstein B, Lefèbure R, Deininger A, Mathisen P & Faithfull C (2016) Terrestrial runoff boosts phytoplankton in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon, but these effects do not propagate to higher trophic levels. Hydrobiologia 766:275-291.

    Schröder A, van Leeuwen A & Cameron T (2015) Empirical support for different types of positive mortality effects. A reply to Abrams. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 30:180-181.

    Schröder A, van Leeuwen A & Cameron T (2014) When less is more: positive population-level effects of mortality. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 29:614-624.

    Beck A, Cheeseman M, Evan C, Levene B, Paragreen J, Reeve H, Schröder A, Spencer S (2014) NO PICNIC: Explorations in art and research. AND Publishing, ISBN 978-1-908452-43-6

    Schröder A (2013) Density- and size-dependent winter survival of late Chaoborus flavicans larvae. PlosOne, 8:e75839.

    Reichstein B, Schröder A, Persson L & de Roos AM (2012) Habitat complexity does not promote coexistence in a size-structured intraguild predation system. Journal of Animal Ecology, 82:55-63.

    Schröder A, Persson L & de Roos AM (2012) Complex shifts between food web states in response to whole-ecosystem manipulations. Oikos 121:417-427.

    Schröder A, Persson L & de Roos AM (2009) Culling experiments demonstrate size-class specific biomass increases with mortality. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 106:2671-2676.

    Schröder A, Nilsson KA, Persson L, van Kooten T & Reichstein B (2009) Invasion success depends on invader body size in a size-structured mixed predation – competition community. Journal of Animal Ecology 78:1152-1162.

    Schröder A (2008) Inference about complex ecosystem dynamics. in: New Models for Ecosystem Dynamics and Restoration. Hobbs, R. and Suding, K. (eds.), pp. 50-62, Island Press, Washington DC, USA.

    Schröder A, Persson L & de Roos AM (2005) Direct experimental evidence for alternative stable states: A review. Oikos 110:3-19.

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