Dr. Theresa Hügel

IMPRS Alumni
MPI for Ornithology Seewiesen
Research Group Goerlitz

Main Focus

Behavioural variability as anti-predator adaptation in moths 
Many adaptations evolved in prey animals in response to predation threat, such as mimicry to trick the visual system, spines to mechanically prevent predation, or behavioural adaptations. A common anti-predator behaviour is unpredictable movement, so called protean behaviour. The bat-moth interaction is a classic example to study this kind of behaviour. With their ultrasound sensitive ears, many moth species can detect the echolocation calls of insectivorous bats. Upon detecting a bat, they elicit evasive flight manoeuvres to escape the attacker. The simplicity of the auditory system of moths and the fact that this predator-prey interaction is purely based on sound, make bats and moths a great model system for studying the function, ecology and evolution of auditory-guided behaviour. While I was focusing on bats during my master thesis, I am now interested in quantifying the intra- and interspecific stereotypy and variability in this anti-predator behaviour in several moth species from different families. 

Curriculum Vitae

Since Sept. 2014: PhD student at Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, Germany
2014 Msc in Biology, Julius Maximilian University of Würzburg, Germany  Masterthesis: Information transfer with heterospecific echolocation calls: A study of species-specific reaktions of wild Myotis capaccinii 
2011 Bsc in Biology, Julius Maximilian University of Würzburg, Germany 
Bachelorthesis: Combined effects of Nosema ceranae and transgenic bt maize on worker bees (Apis mellifera)  

2014  Award for outstanding masterthesis (University of Würzburg)
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