Helena Einzmann


Email: helena.einzmann@uol.de

Helena Einzmann

Dr. Helena JR Einzmann

Scientific staff until May 2023

Research interests

  • Epiphyte assemblages of tropical forests and anthropogenic landscapes
  • Microclimatic influences on epiphyte assemblages
  • Influences of anthropogenic landscape changes on epiphyte assemblages
  • Mechanical effect of wind on epiphytes: how large is the force on epiphytes when exposed to wind?
  • What force is needed to detach an epiphyte from its substrate?

Project: Epiphytes and wind in a changing world

Epiphytes are a key element of tropical forests that are known as a cradle of biodiversity. Highly diverse themselves, epiphytes provide habitat and food for many dependent organisms and play a key role in the water and nutrient cycling of the ecosystem. Structurally depend on their host and growing at the interface between terrestrial vegetation and the atmosphere, they are tightly coupled to the atmosphere and hence much more affected to changes in any climate regime. Therefore, it is surprising how little is known about how wind affects epiphytes. The project links biodiversity research with physics aiming to understand the effect of wind on the epiphytes` vital attachment to their host. This becomes even more important as their natural habitat, the tropical forests, are fragmented by land-use change, exposing them further, which potentiates the negative effects of climate change, e.g. intensification of strong storm events.


are listed here.

Reviewed for

  • Acta Oecologia
  • American Journal of Botany
  • Annals of Botany
  • Australian Journal of Botany
  • Biodiversitas Journal of Biological Diversity
  • Biodiversity and Conservation
  • Flora
  • forests
  • Frontiers in Forests and Global Change
  • Journal of Applied Ecology
  • Journal of Tropical Ecology
  • Nordic Journal of Botany
  • Oecologia
  • plant biology
  • Plant Ecology & Diversity
  • Plant Taxonomy and Geography
  • Revista de Biologia Tropical
  • Urban Ecosystems

Curriculum vitae

Nov. 2016 – May 2023

Scientific staff, University Oldenburg

Oct. 2011 – Jul. 2016

PhD, Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg


Thesis (magna cum laude): “Epiphytes in human-modified landscapes“

Nov. 2015 – Feb. 2016

Scientific staff, University Oldenburg

Okt. 2014 – Aug. 2015

Scientific staff, University Oldenburg

May 2014 – Aug. 2014

Scientific staff / teaching assistant University Oldenburg

May 2013 – Dec. 2013

Scientific staff, University Oldenburg

Jul. 2012 – Dec. 2012

Scientific staff, University Oldenburg

Oct. 2005 – Sep. 2010

Biology studies, Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg

Sep. 2008

Bachelor of Science - Biology


Thesis: “Funktionelle Untersuchungen an Pseudobulben“

Oct. 2010

Master of Science - Biology

  Thesis: “Investigation of epiphyte communities of deciduous and evergreen trees in a tropical lowland forest”


Contributions to scientific congresses

Host of the symposium “Vascular epiphytes: current knowledge and future challenges" with Glenda Mendieta-Leiva and Ana María Benavides at the 58th Annual Meeting of the ATBC, July 10-14, 2022, Cartagena, Colombia.

Einzmann HJR, Zotz G, Puczylowski J & Tay JYL. 2021. Go with the flow: epiphytic bromeliads are unlikely to be detached by laminar wind flows of hurricane force. Oral presentation at the British Ecological Society: Ecology Across Borders 2021 – Joint Annual Meeting with the French Society for Ecology and Evolution, Liverpool, UK.

Einzmann HJR, Weichgrebe L & Zotz G. 2021. Dinámica a largo plazo de comunidades de epífitas vasculares en Annona glabra a lo largo de la costa de la Isla Barro Colorado, Panamá. Invited speaker at the I Simposio Colombiano de Epífitas, Junio 9-11 2021, Medellín, Colombia - online.

Einzmann HJR, Weichgrebe T & Zotz G. 2019. Long-term change in epiphyte populations and communities. Oral presentation at the 49th Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Münster, Germany.

Einzmann HJR & Zotz G. 2017. An unresolved contradiction: demographic patterns and metapopulation dynamics of vascular epiphytes. Poster at the Joint Annual Meeting: Ecology across borders with BES, GfÖ, NECOV & EEF. Gent, Belgium.

Einzmann HJR, Döcke L & Zotz G. 2016. Epiphytes in Human-Modified Landscapes. Oral presentation at the 7th International Canopy Conference. August 21st-26th 2016, London, UK.

Einzmann HJR & Zotz G. 2015. Epiphytes in Human-Modified Landscapes: Dispersal and Establishment. Poster at the 45th Annual Conference of the Ecological Society of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. September 31st-4th 2015, Göttingen, GER.

Pfanzelt S, Surina B, Einzmann HJR & Albach D. 2012. Bridging the Alps and the Middle East: Phylogeny and systematics of the genus Wulfenia Jacq. (Plantaginaceae). Oral presentation at the 21st International Symposium "Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology" of th German Botanical Society (DBG), September 16th-19th 2012, Mainz, GER.

Einzmann HJR & Zotz G. 2012. "Oh, how beautiful is Panama?" - The epiphyte's perspective. Poster at the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of Germany, Austria and Switzerland, September 10th-14th 2012, Lüneburg, GER.

Einzmann HJR, Beyschlag J, Wanek W & Zotz G. 2011. Host tree phenology affects epiphyte assemblages. Oral presentation at the 41st Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of Germany, Austria and Switzerland, September 5th-9th 2011, Oldenburg, GER.

Einzmann HJR, Beyschlag J, Wanek W & Zotz G. 2011. On the sunny side - epiphyte assemblages of deciduous and evergreen trees in a tropical lowland forest. Poster at the Annual Conference of the Society for Tropical Ecology, February 21st-24th 2011, Frankfurt a. M., GER.

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