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You are heartily invited to participate in the 86th Annual Meeting of the German Society of Mammalogy (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Säugetierkunde e.V.) hosted by Senckenberg Research Institute - Conservation Genetics Group.

Official announcement is published in Mammalian Biology Volume 77 Issue3 PDF Download 


The Conference will take place at the Senckenberg Research Institute and Natural History Museum Frankfurt.

The congress will address the topic:

"The Past, Present and Future of Mammalian Diversity"


Being mammals ourselves, humans have always had great compassion for this particular group of animals. Subsequent to the extinction of dinosaurs, it has been up to the mammalian lineage to fill many empty niches in (mostly) terrestrial ecosystems. Mammals are now a diverse class of animals, comprising well above 5000 species in more than 1000 genera.

One of the early and still unbroken interests of biologists is to understand how this diversity came about. Palaeontology has contributed greatly to our understanding of mammalian evolution. Great strides have been made in this field due to the technological revolution of the 20th century. For example, it is now possible to use high-tech imaging and image processing devices in the study of fossils. The indirect study of Past biological diversity through inferring the tree of life – be it based on morphological or genetic characters – plays an ever increasing role in phylogeny. Advances in molecular biology have extended the study of fossil material into the field of genetics comprising the young discipline of palaeogenetics.

The study of mammalian engages the public in nature conservation. Many mammals play a significant role as so-called “flag-ship species”: they attract public attention and funding for nature conservation projects. Understanding processes that shape the Present day diversity and distribution of mammals, such as demographic dynamics at the population level, or behavioural dynamics at the individual level, helps to form the basis for deciding how to preserve mammals, and nature as a whole.

With knowledge about the Past and Present of mammalian diversity to hand, we can devise programmes to preserve this precious resource for the Future. Nature conservation is traditionally difficult because of the conflicting interests of many stakeholders. Weighing the conservation of nature against human development is a difficult task and has profound implications for the Future of us all human and non-human mammals alike.

The topics we study in mammalian biology are as diverse as is this class of animals. Technological advances in studying the Past, Present and Future of mammals, paired with the emergence of globalised conservation agendas during the last decades, makes it a timely undertaking to organise a conference in which scientists from diverse disciplines come together – to study diversity at all temporal levels. We cordially invite you to participate in a census of mammalian diversity at this year’s “86th Annual Conference of the German Society of Mammalogy”, this late summer in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

On behalf of the organising committee,

Dr. Robert Kraus