Project partner #13

NAME OF THE ORGANIZATION: University of Hamburg (UHAM)

MAIN CONTACT FOR GoJELLY: Dörthe Müller-Navarra,

ADDRESS: Ohnhorststrasse 18, 22609 Hamburg, GERMANY

WEBSITE and other links:

UHAM is one of Germany’s largest universities with over 40.000 students, owned by the German State of Hamburg. The university is divided in 8 faculties, from which the faculty of mathematics-informatics and natural sciences (MIN) is the largest and currently holds 2 projects funded by the German “Excellence Initiative”, including the excellence project CliSAP (Climate Simulation and Prediction) with a large marine component.

TEAM: Dörthe Müller-Navarra and her aquatic ecology team are interested in the role of biochemical resources structuring aquatic food webs. In GoJelly we want to gain a better understanding of observed food web shifts from finfish to jellyfish regimes. To do so we are analyzing natural samples, especially for fatty acids, to biochemically characterize jelly fish populations.

Team members

PD Dr. Dörthe Müller-Navarra, aquatic ecologist

Food web interactions are central in ecology. By determining the material and energy transfer, they shape the biomass distribution, and thus structure of an ecosystem with impact on its functioning. For the individual food web participant, feeding interactions are the critical step to acquire and compete for limiting resources, and are thus under adaptive control. For example, heterotrophic organisms’ intake of essential biomolecules can be critical for the consumers’ fitness and trophic transfer efficiency, as shown for omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, and thus  imbalances on the biochemical level can lead to trophic limitations within food webs. My research includes coupled experimental and field studies to understand trophic transfer in aquatic ecosystems with focus on pelagic systems.