PD Dr. Elizabeth Yohannes (Akad. Rätin)

Elizabeth leads the group at the Stable Isotope Lab. She established the facility at the Institute. She has several years of experience working with mass spectrometery and applying stable isotope analysis. She received her PhD from Austria and Max-Planck Institute for Ornithology, and did a Post-doc in Germany, Canada and USA, where she used nitrogen, carbon, sulphur and deuterium isotopes for research in animal ecology and movement.


Selected Publications 

Yohannes E., Woog F. (2019). A multi-isotope and morphometric analysis to uncover ecological niche divergence in two endemic island birds from Madagascar: the Dark and Common Newtonia (Vangidae).  J. Orn. https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10336-019-01702-6

Hobson K.A., Norris D.R., Norris K.J., Yohannes E. (2019). Animal Migration: A Context for Using New Techniques and Approaches in: Tracking Animal Migration with Stable Isotopes Edited by Hobson K.A and Wassenaar I.L. (2nd Edition).

Jacobs A., Carruthers M., Eckmann R., Yohannes E., Adams E. C., Behrmann-Godel J., Elmer R. K. (2019). Rapid niche expansion by selection on functional genomic variation after ecosystem recovery. Nature Ecology & Evolution  3:77–86

Yohannes E., Rothhaupt K-O (2018) Dietary nutrient allocation to somatic tissue synthesis in emerging subimago freshwater mayfly Ephemera danica. BMC Ecology 18:57 https://doi.org/10.1186/s12898-018-0213-9

 Quispe R., Yohannes E. Gahr M. (2018). Seasonality at the equator: isotope signatures, molt timing and hormonal regulation of a non-migratory neo-tropical songbird. Frontiers in Zoology 15:39

Procházka P., Brlík V., Yohannes E., Meister B., Auerswald J., Ilieva M. Hahn S. (2018). Across migratory divide: divergent migration directions and non-breeding grounds of Eurasian reed warblers revealed by geolocators and stable isotopes. Journal of Avian Biology 49:6

Yohannes, E., Ragg, B. R. Armbruster, P. J.  Rothhaupt K-O (2018) Physical interaction between Dreissena polymorpha and Dikerogammarus villosus: a supplementary path for invasion and expansion ? Fundam. Appl. Limnol. 191/1 (2018), 79–85.


Yohannes E. and  Rothhaupt K-O (2017) Dual-tracer based isotope turnover rates in a highly invasive mysid Limnomysis benedeni from Lake Constance. Ecology & Evolution. 1–6.

Yohannes E., Grimm C, Rothhaupt K-O, Behrmann-Godel, J. (2017) The effect of parasite infection on stable isotope turnover rates of δ15N, δ13C and δ34S in multiple tissues of Eurasian perch Perca fluviatilis. PLoS ONE 12(1): e0169058. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0169058

Yohannes, E., H. Gwinner, R. W. Lee, and H. Schwabl (2016) Stable isotopes predict reproductive performance of European starlings breeding in anthropogenic environments. Ecosphere 7(11):e01566. 10.1002/ecs2.1566

Sorensen, C.M., Fairhurst, DM., Jenni‑Eiermann, S., Yohannes, E., Spottiswoode, NC (2016) Seasonal rainfall at long‑term migratory staging sites is associated with altered carry‑over effects in a Palearctic‑African migratory bird. BMC Ecology 16:41:41

Dehnhard, N., Yohannes, E., Jenny, H., Segelbaher, G. (2016) Stable isotope ratios in alpine rock ptarmigan and black grouse sampled along precipitation gradient. Basic and Applied Ecology doi:10.1016/j.baae.2016.04.007

Gergs, R., Steinberger, N., Beck, B., Basen, T., Yohannes, E, Schulz, R., Martin-Creuzburg, D. (2015). Compound specific δ13C analysis reveal sterol metabolic constrains in an aquatic invertebrate. Rapid comm. mass spec. 29:1789-1794

Rothhaupt, KOR., Fornoff, F. & Yohannes, E. (2015) Induced responses to grazing by an insect herbivore (Acentria ephemerella) in an immature macrophyte (Myriophyllum spicatum): an isotopic study. Ecology & Evolution - DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1624

Behrmann-Godel, J. & Yohannes, E. (2015) Multiple isotope-analysis of the pike tapeworm Trianophorus nodulosus reveal peculiarities in consumer-tissue discrimination patterns. J. Helminthology 22:1-6

Pokharel, K. Yohannes, E. Salvarina, I. Storch, I. (2015) Isotopic evidence for dietary niche overlap between barking deer and four-horned antelope in Nepal. Journal of Biological Research  22 (1).

Rothhaupt, KOR., Hanselmann, J.A. & Yohannes, E. (2014) Niche differentiation between sympatric alien aquatic crustaceans: an isotopic evidence. Basic and Applied Ecology 15:453-463

Dechmann, KN D., Wikelski, M., Varga, K., Yohannes, E., Fielder, W., Safi, K., Burkhart, W.-D. & Teague O’Mara, M . Tracking post-hibernation behavior and early migration does not reveal the expected sex-differences in a „female-migrating“ bat PLoS ONE 9(12): e114810

Procházka, P., Krali, J. Pearson DJ, Yohannes, E. (2014) Moulting and wintering grounds of Marsh Warblers Acrocephalus palustris: evidence from stable isotopes and and ring recoveries. Acta Ornithologica 49: 193-200.

Yohannes, E., Franke, L., Rothhaupt, KOR (2013) Zebra mussel δ13C and δ15N as a proxy for depth-specific pelagic isotope profiles. Hydrobiologia 731: 191-198

Yohannes, E., Arnaud, A., Béchet, A. (2013) Tracking variations of wetland use by breeding flamingos using fledglings feather and blood δ15N, δ13C and δ34S isotope signatures. Estuaries, Coastal & Shelf Sciences, 136:11-18

Yohannes, E., Nikolaus, G. & Pearson, J.D. (2013) Stable isotopes of soil collected from feet of two species of migratory Acrocephalus give clues to stopover sites. Scopus 32: 1–9.3

Salvarina, I, Yohannes, E., Siemers, M.B., Koselj, K. (2013) Advantages of using fecal samples for stable isotope analysis in bats: evidence using a triple isotopic experiment. Rapid Comm. Mass Spec. 27:1945-53

Gwinner, H. Yohannes, E., Schawbl, H. (2013) Nest composition and yolk hormones: do female European starlings adjust yolk androgens to nest quality? Avian Biol. Research 6: 1-6.

Lam, M.M., Martin-Creuzburg, D., Rothhaupt, K-O., Safi, K., Yohannes, E., Salvarina, I. (2013) Tracking diet preferences of bats using stable isotope and fatty acid signatures of faeces.  PLoS ONE 8(12): e83452

Hahn, S., Dimitrov, D., Rehse, S., Yohannes, E., Jenni, L. (2013) Avian claw morphometry and growth determine the temporal pattern of archived stable isotopes. J. Avian Biol. 45: 202–207

Njabo, Y. K., Smith, B. T., Yohannes, E. (2013) Feeding habits of culicine mosquitoes based on stable isotopes and blood meal analyses. J. Parasit. & Vector Biol. 5:6-12.2

Yohannes, E., Lee, W. R., Valcu, M., Kempenaers, B. (2012) Feather deuterium as indicator of age-class in the  Pectoral Sandpiper Calidris melanotos. IBIS - International Journal of Avian Science.154:868-873

Yohannes, E., Lee, W. R., Popenko, V., Bauchinger, U.  (2012) Bone collagen and muscle δ13C in relation to timing of migration in  in Garden Warbler Sylvia borin during return migration from Africa J. Ornith. 153:783-791

Yohannes, E.,  Jochimsen, C.M. and Räß , M. (2012) Changes in blood stable isotopes δ13C, δ15N, plasma corticosterone and body mass in exercising birds using a wind tunnel (IBIS – International Journal of Avian Science BOU Proceeding)

Yohannes, E., Palinauskas, V., Valkiūnas, G., Lee, W. R., Bolshakov, V. C., Bensch, S. (2011) Does avian malaria infection affect feather stable isotope signatures? Oecologia-167:937-942

Yohannes, E., Lee, W. R. Jochimsen, M.C., Hansson, B (2011) Stable isotope ratios in winter-grown feathers of Great Reed Warblers, Clamorous Reed Warblers and their hybrids in a sympatric breeding population in Kazakhstan. IBIS - British J. of Ornithology 153:502-508

Yohannes, E., Lee, W. R., Popenko, V., Bauchinger, U.  (2011) Effects of long- and short-term dietary choice on body condition in garden warbler Sylvia borin during a return migration from Africa: insights from stable-isotope analysis (accepted: J. for Ornith.)

Yohannes, E., Valcu, M., Lee, W. R., Kempenaers, B. (2010) Resource use for reproduction depends on spring arrival time and wintering area in an arctic breeding shorebird. J. Avian Biology 41:580-590

Procházka, P., Reif, J., Hořák, D., Klvaňa, P, Lee, R. W. Yohannes, E. (2010) Using stable isotopes to trace resource acquisition and trophic position in four Afrotropical birds with different diets. Ostrich: African J. of Ornith. 81: 273–275

Yohannes E., Ash, J., Biebach, H., Nikolaus, G. and Pearson, J. D. (2009) Migration speeds among eleven species of long-distance migrating passerines across Europe, the Desert and Eastern Africa. J. Avian Biology 40: 126-134

Yohannes, E., Hansson, B., Lee W. R., Waldenström, J., Westerdahl, H., Åkesson, M., Hasselquist, D. Bensch S (2008) Isotope signatures in winter moulted feathers predict malaria prevalence in a breeding avian host. Oecologia 158:299–306

Yohannes E., Ash, J., Biebach, H., Nikolaus, G. and Pearson, J. D. (2008) Passerine migration strategies and body mass variation along geographic sectors across Europe, East Africa, the Middle East and Arabia Peninsula. J. Ornith 150:369–381

Yohannes E., Bensch S, Lee W.R (2008) Philopatry of winter moult area in migratory Great Reed Warblers Acrocephalus arudinaceus demonstrated by stable isotope profiles. J. Ornith. 149:261–265

Yohannes, E., Križanauskienė, A., Valcu, M., Bensch, S, Kempenaers, B. (2008) Prevalence of malaria and related haemosporidian parasites in two shorebird species with different winter habitat distribution. J. Ornith 150: 287-291

Hobson, K. A. and Yohannes, E. (2007) Establishing elemental turnover in exercising birds using a wind tunnel: Implications for stable isotope tracking of migrants. Canadian J. Zool 85:703-708

Yohannes, E., Hobson, K.A. and Pearson, D. J. (2007) Feather stable isotope profiles reveal stopover habitat selection and site fidelity in nine migratory birds. J. Avian Biology 38:347-355

Yohannes, E., Hobson, K.A., Pearson, D. J. and Wassenaar, I. L (2007) Stable isotope analyses of feathers help identify autumn stopover sites of three long-distance migrants in northeastern Africa. J. Avian Biology 36:235-241