Dr. Henrik Kusche

IMPRS Alumni
Hamburg, Germany

Main Focus

Evolutionary Ecology and Genetics, Diversification of Fishes, Adaptation, Adaptive Radiation, Applied Evolutionary Biology

PhD thesis

Ecological and evolutionary consequences of color- and trophic polymorphisms in cichlid fishes, with Axel Meyer, Zoology and Evolutionary Biology lab, University of Konstanz

Curriculum Vitae


  • 2014 – present Postdoctoral researcher at the Thünen-Institute of Fisheries Ecology in Hamburg, Germany. Project: “Offshore Site Selection for a sustainable and multi-functional use of marine areas in heavily utilized seas with the North Sea as an example”
  • 2013 Guest scientist at the Biodiversity Research Centre at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada (3 months). Hosted by Prof. Dolph Schluter
  • 2010 - 2013 PhD candidate in Prof. Axel Meyer’s Lab at the University of Konstanz with the International Max Planck Research School for Organismal Biology, Germany (3 years, 8 months). Co-supervised by Dr. Kathryn R. Elmer (University of Glasgow, UK) and Prof. Christian Sturmbauer (University of Graz, Austria) PhD thesis: “Ecological and Evolutionary Consequences of Color- and Trophic Polymorphisms in Cichlid Fishes”, Program completed with final grade “magna cum laude/very good”
  • 2010 Field expedition to the Nicaraguan crater lakes, Nicaragua (6 weeks).
  • 2010 ESF FroSpects Summer School “Empiricial Methods in Speciation Research” at EAWAG, Kastanienbaum, Switzerland (1 week)
  • 2010 Field expedition and field course on cichlid diversity and evolution at Lake Tanganyika, Zambia (4 weeks)
  • 2008 - 2009 External Diploma thesis in Prof. Axel Meyer’s Lab at the University of Konstanz, Germany (1 year). Diploma thesis: “The Midas cichlid species complex as a model system for speciation: revealing patterns of morphological and genetic variation across Nicaraguan crater lakes”
  • 2003 - 2009 Diploma studies in Biology at the University of Göttingen, Germany (6 years). Main subject: Zoology; Minor subjects: Aquaculture & Organic Chemistry, Program completed with final grade “very good”
  • 2008 Research assistant at the Max-Planck-Institute of Experimental Medicine, Department of Molecular Neurology, Göttingen, Germany (8 months)
  • 2007 Research project at the CNRS-Research Centre on Animal Cognition, Toulouse, France (7 months). Project:”Olfactory trace versus delay conditioning in the honeybee”
  • 2006 - 2007 Academic year at the University Paul-Sabatier, Toulouse, France (1 year)


  • 2013    Lecture on „Ecological speciation“ for „Molecular Evolutionary Biology“ intensive course at the University of Konstanz, Germany (1 lecture à 90 min)
  • 2010 - 2013    Teaching assistant on various topics of the Evolution and Behaviour lecture series at the University of Konstanz, Germany (20 tutorials à 45 min).
  • 2007 - 2008    Teaching assistant at Albrecht-von-Haller-Institute of Plant Science at the University of Göttingen, Germany (ca. 20 laboratory courses on botany and microscopy)


  • 2012 & 2013   Master student projects of Sebastian Stockmaier and Jakob Paul Morath during six-week intensive course “Molecular Evolutionary Biology“ at the University of Konstanz, Germany (supervision of student project including development, execution, analysis and mentoring)


  • 2015    Postdoctoral fellowship of the Ministère de l'Éducation, de l'Enseignement Supérieur et de la Recherche du Québec for a 1 year research project at the Université Laval, Québec City, Canada
  • 2014    DAAD postdoctoral fellowship for a 2 year research project at Bangor University, Bangor, UK (declined)
  • 2013    Scholarship of DFG/Excellence Initiative for three-month research visit at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • 2011    “Cichliden-Förderpreis” of the Deutsche Cichliden-Gesellschaft
  • 2010    IMPRS travel grant for the field course at Lake Tanganyika, Zambia
  • 2006 – 2007    Erasmus scholarship for academic year abroad at the Université Paul-Sabatier in Toulouse, France
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