IEB Evolutionary Ecology Research Group

Leader of the research group: 
Profile of the group: 

The main research interest of the Evolutionary Ecology Research Group focuses on the proximal determination and function of various behavioural traits, their role in mediating the interactions among individuals and species as well as in how they mediate adaptations to different environments, and finally, the evolutionary and ecological consequences of these interactions. The researches involve, on the first place, the behavioural ecological study of a Hungarian population of a passerine species (collared flycatcher, Ficedula albicollis), but we also perform investigations on other model species under natural and laboratory (experimental) conditions. We aim at uncovering mechanisms that govern the patterns at the among-population or at the among-species level by using phylogenetic (comparative) approaches.

The main goals of the group are:
(1) to unravel selective mechanisms that shape the variance of behaviours at the within-individual and between-individual levels that lead to a balance between the consistency and plasticity of phenotypes;
(2) to understand the role of bird song in mediating acoustic communication and cultural evolution
(3) to investigate the effect of animal behaviour on the ecological interactions among species (i.e. host-parasite or predator-pray interactions);
(4) to discover how animal populations respond to climate change or to other human-enhanced environmental changes, and how behavioural traits are involved in such processes;
(5) to develop and apply statistical methods that are used in evolutionary ecology to handle hierarchically or phylogenetically structured data.

Selected publications:


Horváth, Gergely, László Zsolt Garamszegi, Judit Bereczki, Tamás János Urszán, Gergely Balázs, Gábor Herczeg (2019): Roll with the fear: environment and state dependence of pill bug (Armadillidium vulgare) personalities Sci Nat (2019) 106: 7.


Jablonszky M, Szász E, Krenhardt K, Markó G, Hegyi G, Herényi M, Laczi M, Nagy G, Rosivall B, Szöllősi E, Török J, Garamszegi LZ (2018): Unravelling the relationships between life history, behaviour and condition under the pace-of-life syndromes hypothesis using long-term data from a wild bird Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 72:52
Laszlo Zsolt Garamszegi, Magdalena Zagalska-Neubauer, David Canal, Gyoergy Blazi, Miklos Laczi, Gergely Nagy, Eszter Szollosi, Eva Vaskuti, Janos Torok, Sandor Zsebok (2018): MHC-mediated sexual selection on birdsong: Generic polymorphism, particular alleles and acoustic signals MOLECULAR ECOLOGY, 27 - 11, pp. 2620 - 2633.


Laszlo Zsolt Garamszegi & Anders Pape Moller (2017): Partitioning within-species variance in behaviour to within- and between-population components for understanding evolution ECOLOGY LETTERS. 20 - 5, pp. 599 - 608. DOI: 10.1111/ele.12758
Zsebők, Sándor, Gábor Herczeg, György Blázi, Miklós Laczi, Gergely Nagy, Eszter Szász, Gábor Markó, János Török (2017): Short- and long-term repeatability and pseudo-repeatability of bird song: sensitivity of signals to varying environments Behav Ecol Sociobiol (2017) 71: 154.