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Dr. Werner Suter - Personal Homepage

Organisational unit Community Ecology
Plant-Animal Interactions
Address Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL
Zürcherstrasse 111
8903 Birmensdorf

Room Bi MG D 35
Contact Phone: +41 44 739 2567
Fax: +41 44 7392 215
Web / E-Mail


Saadani SU

I am interested in how animals select and use their habitat, what foraging strategies they employ, and how they affect their resources.

The current focus is on the trophic interactions between ungulates and the vegetation in nutrient-poor savannas. Over the years, I have studied similar interactions between ungulate grazers/browsers in Central European lowland and alpine forests, and between predators and prey populations in aquatic habitats. These included effects of great cormorant on fish and of diving ducks on mollusc populations.

Other studies of habitat use by vertebrates focus on fragmentation effects in forests and on modelling habitat selection (African bulbuls, capercaillie, Alpine mammals).

Current topics include:

  1. Habitat selection and dispersal abilities in birds of forest fragments, Tanzania
  2. Large herbivore-plant interactions in humid tallgrass savannas, Tanzania
  3. Habitat models of Alpine mammals, Switzerland


I am a lecturer at ETH Zurich, Department of Environmental Sciences (, where I currently offer two courses, Vertebrate Ecology and Wildlife Conservation & Management (,

Other professional activities

Member of the scientific advisory board, Swiss Biodiversity Forum ( I have served on the board of a several other professional organisations, such as the Swiss Ornithological Society (

Education and previous positions

1998–2006 WSL, Programme manager „Forest-Wildlife-Landscape”, (
2002–2006 WSL, Deputy head of Section Biodiversity
1993–1998 WSL and ETH Zurich, Research Associate, Chair for Nature and Landscape Protection
1984–1992 Swiss Ornithological Institute (, Project Manager
1983–1984 University of Cape Town, Percy FitzPatrick Institute, PostDoc (
1982 PhD, University of Bern, Zoological Institute