Population Ecology at University of Zurich

meerkatWe investigate the demographic processes governing the dynamics and persistence of natural populations. Our aim is to contribute to ecological and evolutionary theory, and to provide scientific guidance for biodiversity conservation. A central theme in our research is to understand how natural populations respond to temporal and spatial heterogeneity in their environment. Such population responses can manifest themselves in several forms (such as demographic, phenotypic, phenological, behavioural), and we focus on ecological and evolutionary mechanisms underlying these responses to better understand population persistence in changing environments. To investigate these mechanisms, we integrate ecological and evolutionary theory, employ a rich biodemography toolset, and analyse life-history data from several natural and experimental populations.

Population Ecology Group
Department of Evolutionary Biology & Environmental Studies
University of Zurich


Selected Publications

Clements CF, Ozgul A (2016) Including trait-based early warning signals helps predict population collapse. Nature Communications 7: 10984

Brooks ME, Mugabo M, Rodgers GM, Benton TG, Ozgul A (2016) How well can body size represent effects of the environment on demographic rates? Disentangling correlated explanatory variables. Journal of Animal Ecology 85: 318–328

Clements C, Drake J, Griffiths J, Ozgul A (2015) Factors affecting the detectability of early warning signals in wild populations. American Naturalist 186: 50-58

Cozzi G, Börger L, Hutter P, Abegg D, Beran C, Broekhuis F, McNutt J, Ozgul A (2015) Effect of trophy hunting leftovers on the ranging behaviour of large carnivores: A case study on spotted hyenas. PLoS ONE 10(3): e0121471

Ozgul A, Bateman AW, English S, Coulson T, Clutton-Brock TH (2014) Linking body mass and group dynamics in an obligate cooperative breeder, Suricata suricatta. Journal of Animal Ecology 83: 1357–66