The Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig

is a research museum of the Leibniz Association

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[20.11.2019] Since these groups are among the most diverse beetles representing nearly half of all living beetle species the authors of the study are convinced that these events were among the most important triggers for the successful evolution of beetles. Plant cell wall-degrading enzymes appear to have been key to the Mesozoic diversification of herbivorous beetles. Remarkably this incorporation of genes occurred in two independent events.
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[22.10.2019] A new study examines these classic hypotheses by shining a light on the early history of Lepidoptera, the order that includes moths and butterflies. Using the largest-ever data set assembled for the group, an international team of researchers created an evolutionary family tree for Lepidoptera and used fossils to estimate when moths and butterflies evolved key traits. Their findings show that flowering plants did drive much of these insects' diversity. In a surprise twist, however, multiple moth lineages evolved "ears" millions of years before the existence of bats, previously credited with triggering moths' development of hearing organs.
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[15.10.2019] Sometimes scientists need years to dtermine the exact status of an animal species. This happened to bats caught by Bonn zoologist Jan Decher and his team during an environmental impact assessment in 2008 in a rainforest in Guinea. These animals have now been described by a group of authors from Bonn and Eswatini as part of a revision as a new genus and species Parahypsugo happoldorum. The new species is named in honor of David and Meredith Happold, both of whom have written important works on bats in Africa and much of the 6-volume standard work "The Mammals of Africa" ​​(2013).
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[14.05.2019] Today, the three-dimensional visualization and analysis of biological samples using computer tomography (CT) is a routine procedure. However, in the past it was very difficult to visualize the fine surface details of many organisms. Scientists at the Universities of Cologne and Bonn and the Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig – Leibniz Institute for Animal Biodiversity in Bonn have now developed a new method to digitally capture and display even the finest surface structures.
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[10.05.2019] A tiny millipede of only 8.2 mm in length was recently found in 99-million-year-old amber in Myanmar. Using the latest research technologies, the scientists concluded that not only were they handling the first fossil millipede of the order (Callipodida) and also the smallest amongst its contemporary relatives, but that its morphology was so unusual that it drastically deviated from its contemporary relatives.
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[18.12.2018] Scientists at the Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig - Leibniz Institute for Animal Biodiversity (ZFMK) discovered more than 450 millipedes in 100-million-year-old Burmese amber. 13 of the 16 main groups of extant (now-living) millipedes could be identified in the amber with the help of micro-CT technology.
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[14.09.2018] From September 17th to 20th, 2018, the 92nd Annual Meeting of the German Society for Mammalian Biology will take place at the Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig - Leibniz Institute for Biodiversity of Animals (ZFMK) in Bonn. 71 Scientists from all over the world will discuss the topics "Mammal Research in Africa", " Conservation and Biogeography" as well as other subjects . Numerous mammal species -from bats to giraffes – will be covered in almost 30 talks that deal with their lifestyle, relationships, and conservation. In addition, 24 scientific posters are presented on further research results. The Fritz-Frank-Award for excellent scientific work in mammalian biology will be awarded on Thursday, 20th of September 2018, at 10.30 am in the lecture room. The award is endowed with 3,000 Euro, further emphasizing the outstanding importance of this honour in the field of life sciences. This year, two awardees were able to convince the jury with their outstanding dissertations. Representatives of the press are welcome.
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[23.05.2017] Madagascar, a tropical island off the coast of east Africa, is home to many plants and animals found nowhere else in the world. The invertebrates found on Madagascar are as spectacular as the island's charismatic lemurs and Baobab trees. The millipede fauna is particularly impressive. Madagascar is home to the giant pill-millipedes. Pill-millipedes have the ability to roll into a sphere and these “giants” (by millipede standards) can reach the size of a baseball when rolled-up.
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[15.05.2017] The angel shark family (Squatinidae) is the second most threatened group of sharks and rays in the world. The Angelshark (Squatina squatina) was once widespread throughout the Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea, however it has now almost disappeared throughout its natural range, mainly due to overfishing. Today, the Canary Islands is the last refuge for the Angelshark, but here too they are under threat. One key factor preventing effective conservation is lack of detailed scientific information about their ecology.However, there is still hope to save these angels.
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[31.01.2017] Natural indigenous forests are rarely found in South Africa. They only cover 0.6% of the countries area and only survived in protected gorges and on mountain slopes. Among others, this is due to fires which are utilized to retain farmland but also to preserve the likewise ecologically valuable grassland and the typical South African fynbos (“fine bush”) vegetation. Despite their small extent these forests hold a rich flora and fauna, constituted of species that only occur there.
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