Anthropogenic influences such as construction projects, land use and pollutant inputs lead to changes in aquatic ecosystems. This can effect fish communities at the species level, as well as its population dynamic, diversity and evenness. Especially commercial fisheries with their considerable by-catch have a massive impact on fish communities and their stocks. In order to record these anthropogenically induced changes as well as the natural influences, the IfAÖ investigates selected ecological parameters of fish communities in the affected areas. Samples are taken using a wide variety of fishing methods and analyzed with state-of-the-art statistical software. As a result trends and ecological risks for fish communities in marine and limnic ecosystems can be derived.

Key services

  • Inventory and assessment of fish communities in the North- and Baltic Sea
  • Identification of fish community structures, depending on prevailing biotic (food web) and abiotic factors (hydrography, habitats)
  • Inventory and assessment of fish communities in limnic systems (EU-WRRL)
  • Special assesments and planning as well as efficiency controls for fish passage in German river systems with reference to the EU-WRRL
  • Description of seasonal and interannual changes of different fish species in relation to environmental influences and anthropogenic impacts
  • Description and assessment of fishing activities in aquatic ecosystems, especially in the context of multiple uses of marine spaces by offshore wind turbines, cable routes, military training areas, gravel mining, protected areas or shipping traffic


Marcel Hartmann
Head of Department

T +49 38204 618-34
E hartmann(at)ifaoe.de