Search staff/organisations dr. J Ottenburghs
Namedr. J Ottenburghs

Job details
DescriptionLecturer at the Wildlife Ecology and Conservation (WEC) group and the Forest Ecology and Forest Management (FEM) group
OrganizationDepartment of Environmental Sciences
Organization UnitWildlife Ecology and Conservation
Side activities
  • Freelancer for the popular science website Scientias - Scientias
    Feb 2020 - Present

    I regularly write short articles for the popular science website Scientias.|

  • Journal Publicity Officer - British Ornithologists' Union
    Mar 2019 - Present

    I write for the blog of the journal Ibis.


I am a curious evolutionary ecologist with a passion for teaching and writing. My teaching involves a variety of ecology courses at the Wildlife Ecology and Conservation (WEC) group and the Forest Ecology and Forest Management (FEM) group. In my research, I study the evolution of birds using the newest genomic techniques. In addition, I regularly write articles for popular science websites, magazines and newspapers.

Expert Profile
Social media
  Personal website
  Avian Hybrids Project - a blog on hybridization in birds
  Jente Ottenburghs on Twitter
  Jente Ottenburghs on Linkedin
  Jente Ottenburghs on Google Scholar Citations
  Jente Ottenburghs on ResearchGate

Publication lists

Hybridization in Geese: Patterns of Introgression

Hybridization appears to be widespread in birds, often accompanied by the exchange of genetic material across species boundaries, referred to as introgression. Especially the Anseriformes (ducks, geese and swans) experience high levels of hybridization. The occurrence of numerous wild hybrids between several goose species indicates that there might be a considerable amount of genetic exchange within this bird family. Furthermore, if certain exchanged genes or genomic regions provide an adaptive advantage, this could lead to adaptive trait transfer between species. In such a way introgressive hybridization can play a significant creative role in the evolutionary history of goose populations. However, if the occurrence of hybridization and the subsequent exchange of genetic material becomes too large species integrity might be jeopardised. Therefore, certain genomic regions should be unsusceptible to introgression, since they preserve species-specific characteristics and/or contribute to reproductive isolation between species. The project proposed here has two main objectives. The first one is aimed at elucidating the creative role of hybridization in the evolutionary history of species, by means of adaptive introgression. The other objective is to identify genomic regions involved in the maintenance of species boundaries despite high levels of introgression. These objectives will be approached by studying the patterns of introgression across the genomes of all goose species.

  • FEM-20909 - Forest and Nature Conservation II - Management Planning and Tools
  • FEM-31806 - Models for Ecological Systems
  • REG-20306 - Climate Change Ecology
  • REG-30306 - Animal Ecology
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