Dr. Melanie Marx
+49 (0)641-99 35775
AG Verhaltensökologie und Ökophysiologie der Tiere
Fields of interest / focus of work
In my research, I focus on the evaluation of population connectivity of European Turtle Doves (Streptopelia turtur), which is important information in the field of species protection. Turtle Doves experienced a strong population decline of more than 78% since 1980 and are Europe’s only long distance migrating columbids, crossing southern Europe, the Mediterranean and Sahara desert to reach their winter quarters in the sub-Saharan belt. Because Turtle Doves are a legal game species, I further analyse the impact of hunt on different European populations. Also, the interest in information about parasite infections was raised by finding a virulent genetic lineage of Trichomonas gallinae in Turtle Doves from the UK, a protozoan that can cause death due to starvation or suffocation. This is why I also work on the evaluation of parasite prevalence, occurrence of virulent lineages and potential effects on the population level.
|07/2016 – present||Biologist at the environmental consultancy LPlan (Büro für Landschafts- und Gewässerökologie).|
|04/2015 – 04/2016||Research assistant at the JLU Giessen, Department of Animal Ecology and Systematics (stable isotope analyses, phylogenetic analyses of Trichomonas gallinae in birds).|
|11/2014 – 03/2015||Research assistant at the JLU Giessen, Department of Animal Ecology and Systematics (data collection on New Island, Falkland Islands).|
|10/2013 – 10/2014||Research assistant at the JLU Giessen, Department of Animal Ecology and Systematics (Euring data evaluation using ArcGIS, stable isotope analyses).|
|2014/2015/2016||Co-supervisor for several degree theses (MSc and BSc in biology) in the department of Animal Ecology and Systematics, JLU Giessen, Germany.|
|05/2016 – 06/2016||Lecturer for MSc biology students during the course “Behavioural ecology”, for which I developed e-learning statistics tutorials and instructed the students during field work (data collection).|
|02/2016 – 04/2016||Lecturer for MSc biology student during the course “laboratory internship”. Project: Species distribution modelling of Turtle doves using Maxent.|
05/2015 – 01/2016 &01/2014 – 06/2014
|Lecturer for ornithological excursions for L3 students with main emphases on species identification, biology and ecology of birds, and registration methods.|
|11/2015 – 12/2015||Lecturer for MSc biology student during the course “laboratory internship”. Project: Phylogenetic analysis of Trichomonas gallinae in songbirds and birds of prey.|
|08/2015 – 09/2015||Lecturer for BSc biology students during the course “Ornithology”.|
|07/2013 & 07/2014||Lecturer for children of the 6thgrade within the scope of the “Schulstunde in der freien Natur” (school lesson in nature), a project of the HGON e.V. and OVAG Energie AG.
Topics: Insects and aquatic life.
|05/2016||Monitoring of artificial nest boxes, measurements and collection of blood samples of Great and Blue tits, House and Tree sparrows.|
|04/2016 – 05/2016||Field work on Comino, Malta to collect swab samples from columbids, Nightjars and owls for the study of Trichomonas gallinae prevalence.|
|06/2015||Monitoring of artificial nest boxes, measurements and collection of blood samples of Tree sparrows.|
|11/2014 – 03/2015||Field work on New Island, Falkland Islands. Nest controls, bird handling, measurements, collection of blood samples and data evaluation of Thin-billed prions, Gentoo and Rockhopper penguins.|
|06/2014||Field assistant at whoosh net catch of Turtle doves in Hesse, Germany.|
|05/2013||Monitoring of artificial nest boxes and measurements of Great and Blue tits.|
|12/2012 – 03/2013||Field work on New Island, Falkland Islands. Nest controls, measurements, collection of blood samples and data evaluation of Thin-billed prions, Magellanic, Gentoo and Rockhopper penguins.|
List of publications
Marx M, Quillfeldt P (2018): Species distribution models of European Turtle Doves in Germany are more reliable with presence only rather than presence absence data. Scientific Reports. 8:16898. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-35318-2.
Marx M, Reiner G, Willems H, Rocha G, Hillerich K, Masello JF, Mayr SL, Moussa S, Dunn JC, Thomas RC, Goodman SJ, Hamer KC, Metzger B, Cecere JG, Spina F, Koschkar S, Calderón L, Romeike T, Quillfeldt P (2017): High prevalence of Trichomonas gallinae in wild columbids across western and southern Europe. Parasites & Vectors. 10:242. DOI: 10.1186/s13071-017-2170-0.
Calderón L, Campagna L, Wilke T, Lormée H, Eraud C, Dunn JC, Rocha G, Zehtindjiev P, Bakaloudis DE, Metzger B, Cecere JG, Marx M, Quillfeldt P (2016): Genomic evidence of demographic fluctuations and lack of genetic structure across flyways in a long distance migrant the European Turtle dove. BMC Evolutionary Ecology. 16: 237, DOI: 10.1186/s12862-016-0817-7.
Marx M, Korner-Nievergelt F, Quillfeldt P (2016): Analysis of Ring Recoveries of European Turtle Doves Streptopelia turtur – Flyways, Migration Timing and Origin Areas of Hunted Birds. Acta Ornithologica. 51(1):55-70. DOI: 10.3161/00016454AO2016.51.1.005
Quillfeldt P, Kleemann L, Marx M (2014): Hessen, Deutschland, Europa, Turteltauben im Fokus. Der Falke. 2:32-33.
Quillfeldt P, Phillips RA, Marx M, Masello JF (2014): Colony attendance and at-sea distribution of thin-billed prions during the early breeding season. Journal of Avian Biology. 45:315-324. DOI: 10.1111/jav.00307.