The Leibniz Institute for the Analysis of Biodiversity Change

is a research museum of the Leibniz Association

Sandgrouse feather evolution



Quick facts

Project title: 
Evolution of water absorption capacity of feathers of sandgrouse (Pteroclididae)
ZFMK Project lead: 
Object of research: 


We investigate the potential water absorption capacity of feathers of sandgrouse (Pteroclididae) by comparative structural analyses of specialised breast and belly feathers. The aim of this research is to develop hypotheses regarding the phylogenetic affinities of the 16 sandgrouse species based on morphological data. Furthermore, the evolution of the water absorption capacities of the different sandgrouse species shall be interpreted phylogentically and ecologically.


Contact person

Head of Section Ornithology
Deputy Head of Department Vertebrata
+49 228 9122-246
+49 228 9122-212
t.toepfer [at]