Project groups


The ability of lineages to adapt to changing environmental conditions crucially depends on changes of their ecological niche, but little is known about the triggers, modes and rates of these changes. Within this project, we develop novel, integrative approaches to understand niche evolution, its drivers, processes and consequences for species diversity. The combination of phylogenetic, ecological, and biogeographic information for different plant and animal groups from various regions together with climatic data will allow us to reveal the factors that determine the diversity of species across different taxonomic groups and regions on Earth.


Fritz, S.A.*, Schnitzler, J.*, Eronen, J.T.*, Hof, C.*, Böhning-Gaese, K.* & C.H. Graham* (2013) : Diversity in time and space: wanted dead and alive. - Trends in Ecology and Evolution 28: 509-516. (* equal contribution)

Goldblatt, P., Manning. J.C. & J. Schnitzler (2013) : A revised subgeneric classification and synopsis of the Afro-Eurasian genus Moraea (Iridaceae: Irideae). - Bothalia 43(1): 29-41. 

Schnitzler, J., Barraclough, T.G., Boatwright, J.S., Goldblatt, P., Manning, J.C., Powell, M.P., Rebelo, T. & V. Savolainen (2011) : Causes of plant diversification in the Cape biodiversity hotspot of South Africa. - Systematic Biology  60(3): 343-357.

Schnitzler, J., Graham, C.H., Dormann, D.F., Schiffers, K. & H.P. Linder (2012) : Climatic niche evolution and species diversification in the Cape flora, South Africa. - Journal of Biogeography 39(12): 2201-2211.

Silvestro, D., Schnitzler, J., Liow, L.H., Antonelli, A. & N. Salamin (2014) : Bayesian estimation of speciation and extinction from incomplete fossil occurrence data. - Systematic Biology doi:10.1093/sysbio/syu006.

Weigand, A. M., Jochum, A., Slapnik, R., Schnitzler, J., Zarza, E. & A. Klussmann-Kolb (2013) : Evolution of Microgastropods (Ellobioidea, Carychiidae): Integrating taxonomic, phylogenetic and evolutionary hypotheses. - BMC Evolutionary Biology 13:18. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-13-18.