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Project collaborations

19°S: Spotted hyaena spatial ecology along a rainfall gradient

The aim of this collaborative project is to understand the effects of environmental parameters and prey availability on spotted hyaena home ranges and movements. We included data from Etosha in the west, and then Khaudum, Bwabwata, Nkasa Rupara, Mudumu and to Hwange in the east.


Edible insects of Southern Africa

Wild edible insects are widely distributed in southern Africa and are sources of nutrition and income for rural people.

  • Landscape genetics of termites in Namibia

Fungus-growing termites play a vital role in the health of semi-arid ecosystems as “soil engineers”. Cataloguing the diversity of both fungus-growing termites species and their symbiotic fungi has been hampered by limitations of classic taxonomy which relies on morphological characters. We will assemble novel baseline data on the diversity of fungus-growing termites and their symbiotic fungi in Namibia using DNA-based methods. This project will result in the first catalog of fungus-growing termites and their symbiotic fungi species, their phylogenetic relationships, and the geographic distribution of species diversity in Namibia.

Project proposal

  • Landscape genetics of edible caterpillars

Of the 20 caterpillar species reported as edible, the mopane worm (Gonimbrasia belina) is the most significantly exploited and traded, locally and across borders. Currently, genetic data on edible caterpillar diversity and phylogeography in Southern Africa is very scarce.


Enigmas of the Cuvelai

A review and an account of unusual and noteworthy features of the Cuvelai Basin that require investigation and understanding.


Lion population genetics

Increasing anthropogenic influences lead to a fragmentation of the habitat of various wild animal populations around the globe and reduces gene flow. In the past century, this also happened increasingly to African lion populations.

  • Assessing genetic diversity of lions in northern Namibia

The aim of this project is to establish a molecular toolbox for invasive and non-invasive lion sampling. Following the successful application of the molecular toolbox, standard population genetics questions can be answered.

  • Namibian Lion Genome Project Conservation Genomics

The aim of this collaborative project is to develop a database and analysis platform for wildlife DNA sequences including Namibian lion samples. Additionally the Namibian lion genomic data will contribute to continent-wide Africa Lion Genome Project.


Spatial Ecology of Lesser Spotted Eagles

Analyses of the movements, habitat choices and other behaviour of migrant Lesser Spotted Eagles in southern Africa. This study uses GPS tracking data for about 60 eagles, many of them tracked over many years.


  • Bernd Meyburg

  • Steff Urban

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