The Institute of Terrestrial and Aquatic Wildlife Research was founded in July 2011 as part of the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Foundation. ITAW performs basic, monitoring and applied research in the area of wildlife biology. The part in Buesum, Schleswig-Holstein focuses on marine mammal ecology, distribution and abundance, habitat use and management, bioacoustics as well as anthropogenic impacts in harbour seals (Phoca vitulina), gray seals (Halichoerus grypus) and harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) and other marine mammal species worldwide.
Another exploratory focus is the health assessment of marine mammals, infectious and zoonotic diseases as contribution to the ONE HEALTH aspect, which consists of clinical examination of free-living animals and pathological investigations of stranded or by-caught individuals. ITAW also provides information to the public using the current research studies and its results. The institute is being involved in teaching school kids e.g. by performing marine mammal and / or fish dissections with children of different school classes in cooperation with the “Kieler Forschungswerkstatt”.
Within Marine Mammals, ITAW is mainly involved in the development of materials, units, training on anthropogenic influence on marine mammals and marine biota regarding acoustic impact. It supports CAU Kiel for organizing and conducting summer schools and teacher trainings.
Prof. Prof. h.c. Dr. Ursula Siebert
Dr. Kristina Lehnert
Med. Vet. Anja Reckendorf