Research groups

We examine the biodiversity and assemblage organization of freshwater fish and macroinvertebrates. Our primary model system is Lake Balaton and its catchment, which is affected by a variety of human impacts. The primary focus is to explore the environmental drivers of population dynamics and assemblage organization.

The primary task of the research group is to study the structure, biological functions and long-term changes of the aquatic ecosystems and their communities (zooplankton, macro-invertebrate, fish, amphibian, reptile, waterbird) especially regard to the Danube and Tisza River valley ecosystems.

Habitat loss and fragmentation are among the major threats to biodiversity in the era of Anthropocene. By applying modern tools of metacommunity ecology, we aim to understand how habitat quality and the spatial configuration of habitat patches in a network jointly shape community composition and sustain biodiversity. At the local scale, we focus on the most relevant stressors, constraints imposed by the environment, and trophic relationships, together with their changes through climate change and other human influences.

Conducting research on planktonic and benthic algae, studying the effects of dynamic water regime, hydrological events, local and global disturbances and climate change.

We apply a variety of ecological methods to study species, habitats, landscapes and ecosystems of conservation importance.

  • Chemical characterization of aquatic environment (water body, sediment, phyto- and zooplankton, phyto-and zoobenthos, macrophyton, macro invertebrates, fish) focusing on the identification and quantification of inorganic and organic compounds
  • Monitoring of water quality in rivers and streams complying with the requirement of the EU Water Framework Directives and database building to follow the changes of physical, chemical and biological parameters of Duna and Tisza rivers

Fundamental and applied research on aquatic macrophytes and biofilm developed on plant surfaces with special focus on:

We study the composition of microbial communities, the role of prokaryotic taxa in nutrient cycling and their biological interactions. Our research team pays special attention to the exploration of unique aquatic habitats in the Carpathian Basin, furthermore to reveal the effects of environmental changes, related adaptations and responses of the communities to the potential consequences of climate change.

Plankton play a central role in aquatic ecosystems, by representing the main primary producers (phytoplankton) and a key link of energy transfer to higher trophic levels (zooplankton). Our research group is motivated to understand how planktonic communities respond to environmental gradients, and how changes in community composition are linked to ecosystem functioning.

The department surveys the biodiversity in the different habitats of the Tisza River, the eleventh longest river in Europe, and in the connected wetlands of its catchment area, investigates the tolerance thresholds of the biota under extremely variable environmental conditions, and explores the role of the tributaries, connected ox-bows, canals, and the hyporheal in the regeneration of the fauna and flora especially following pollution events and flood waves.