Department of Malacology
The focus of the research of the malacological department is in the field of evolutionary systematics. We investigate evolutionary processes such as speciation, radiation and hybridization using a combination of morphological and molecular genetic methods. Depending on the project objectives, the systematic, phylogenetic and population genetic findings are combined with geographic and ecological data to improve our understanding of the processes that resulted in the observed biogeographical and macroeconomic patterns and, thus, the dynamics of ecosystems. We use land snails as model organisms for our studies. Due to their low mobility, land snails are an appropriate model group, not only for the analysis of historical processes, but also as indicators for the quality of habitats and are therefore relevant for nature conservation purposes.