Population Ecology and Ecotoxicology

The integrity of our natural systems is the foundation of a wide range of ecosystem services from which we all benefit. This is why populations and ecosystems are defined as the protection goal in environmental risk assessment of chemicals. Nevertheless, many standardized laboratory tests in ecotoxicology only consider effects on individuals which alone are not sufficient to forecast effects on populations. Taking into account real population dynamics under stress conditions is crucial to realistically project such individual level effects to a population. GhEnToxLab uses a combined approach of predictive mathematical models and laboratory experiments to perform this task. Mechanistic population- and multi-species models are used to extrapolate from individuals to populations under (combined) chemical and environmental stress conditions. Population experiments are performed to explore and quantify intraspecific interactions, and to validate and refine the population models.


Current researchers
Josef Koch, Karel Vlaeminck, Sharon Janssen

Past researchers
Jennifer Hochmuth, Karel Viaene


PhD theses
Hochmuth, J. (2016). Combined effects of chemical and natural stressors on Daphnia magna in a context of global change: extrapolating from short-term experiments on individuals to long-term effects at the population level. Ghent University. Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, Ghent, Belgium.

Viaene, K. (2016). Improving ecological realism in the risk assessment of chemicals: development of an integrated model. Ghent University. Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, Ghent, Belgium.

Recent publications

Vlaeminck, K., et al. (2019). THE USE OF MECHANISTIC POPULATION MODELS IN METAL RISK ASSESSMENT: COMBINED EFFECTS OF COPPER AND FOOD SOURCE ON LYMNAEA STAGNALIS POPULATIONS. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.

Koch, J., & De Schamphelaere, K. (2019). Two dynamic energy budget models for the harpacticoid copepod Nitocra spinipes. JOURNAL OF SEA RESEARCH, 143, 70–77.

Viaene, K. et al. (2015). Species interactions and chemical stress: combined effects of intraspecific and interspecific interactions and pyrene on Daphnia magna population dynamics. ENVIRONMENTAL TOXICOLOGY AND CHEMISTRY34(8), 1751–1759.

Projects
POP-CURE – no reference to website