Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences - Biogeography

Dr. Benjamin Bleyhl






Office location



Postal address


Postdoctoral researcher




Rudower Chaussee 16, Room 2'202

+49 (0)30 2093-6874

+49 (0)30 2093-6848

Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany



About me


Hey, I'm Benjamin. I am a postdoctoral researcher at the Conservation Biogeography lab. Before, I was working here as a research assistant to identify European bison habitat in Germany together with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). After working in various projects with mainly small animals during my bachelors (counting butterfly eggs in the Pyrenees and getting to know each and every sand lizard of a small population near Münster), I went to Berlin to study the Masters in Physical Geography of Human-Environmental Systems. Here, the scale of my studies changed and I got more interested in larger animals (particularly, the largest land mammal in Europe: the European bison) and larger areas (mainly the Caucasus but also the Carpathians and other places). My research interest is focused on large mammal conservation and I thereby try to find ways where and how large mammals can persist and be integrated in human-dominated landscapes.


Curriculum Vitae

Since 2019   Postdoctoral researcher at the Conservation Biogeography lab, Humboldt-University Berlin

2015 2019


Doctoral researcher at the Conservation Biogeography lab, Humboldt-University Berlin, funded through an Elsa-Neumann scholarship

2014 - 2015


Research assistant in the project “Potential European bison habitat in Germany” at the Conservation Biogeography lab, Humboldt-University Berlin

2010 - 2014


Masters in Physical Geography of Human-Environmental Systems at Humboldt-University Berlin and University of Innsbruck

2007 - 2010


Bachelors in Landscape Ecology at University of Münster



Bleyhl, B., Ghoddousi, A., Askerov, E., Bocedi, G., Breitenmoser, U., Manvelyan, K., Palmer, S.C.F., Soofi, M., Weinberg, P., Zazanashvili, N., Shmunk, V., Zurell, D., Kuemmerle, T., 2021. Reducing persecution is more effective for restoring large carnivores than restoring their prey. Ecological Applications 31, e2338. https://doi.org/10.1002/eap.2338

Habibzadeh, N., Ghoddousi, A., Bleyhl, B., Kuemmerle, T., 2021. Rear-edge populations are important for understanding climate change risk and adaptation potential of threatened species. Conservation Science and Practice 3, e375. https://doi.org/10.1111/csp2.375

Lewińska, K.E., Buchner, J., Bleyhl, B., Hostert, P., Yin, H., Kuemmerle, T., Radeloff, V.C., 2021. Changes in the grasslands of the Caucasus based on Cumulative Endmember Fractions from the full 1987–2019 Landsat record. Science of Remote Sensing 4, 100035. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.srs.2021.100035


Kuemmerle, T., K. Perzanowski, and B. Bleyhl. European bison conservation must move beyond entrenched debates – response to Kerley et al. (2020). Animal Conservation. https://doi.org/10.1111/acv.12606

Buchner, J., H. Yin, D. Frantz, T. Kuemmerle, E. Askerov, T. Bakuradze, B. Bleyhl, N. Elizbarashvili, A. Komarova, K. E. Lewińska, A. Rizayeva, H. Sayadyan, B. Tan, G. Tepanosyan, N. Zazanashvili, and V. C. Radeloff. 2020. Land-cover change in the Caucasus Mountains since 1987 based on the topographic correction of multi-temporal Landsat composites. Remote Sensing of Environment 248:111967. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2020.111967

Lewińska, K. E., P. Hostert, J. Buchner, B. Bleyhl, and V. C. Radeloff. (2020). Short-term vegetation loss versus decadal degradation of grasslands in the Caucasus based on Cumulative Endmember Fractions. Remote Sensing of Environment 248:111969. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2020.111969

Baumann, M., J. Kamp, F. Pötzschner, B. Bleyhl, A. Dara, B. Hankerson, A. V. Prishchepov, F. Schierhorn, D. Müller, N. Hölzel, R. Krämer, R. Urazaliyev, and T. Kuemmerle. (2020). Declining human pressure and opportunities for rewilding in the steppes of Eurasia. Diversity and Distributions, 26, 1058-1070. https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.13110 

Ghoddousi, A., Bleyhl, B., Sichau, C., Ashayeri, D., Moghadas, P., Sepahvand, P., Kh. Hamidi, A., Soofi, M. & Kuemmerle, T. (2020): Mapping connectivity and conflict risk to identify safe corridors for the Persian leopard. Landscape Ecology, 35, 1809–1825. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10980-020-01062-0


Perzanowski, K., Bleyhl, B., Olech, W. & Kuemmerle, T. (2019): Connectivity or isolation? Identifying reintroduction sites for multiple conservation goals for wisents (Bison bonasus) in Poland. Animal Conservation, 23, 212-221. doi:10.1111/acv.12530

Bleyhl, B., Arakelyan, M., Askerov, E., Bluhm, H., Gavashelishvili, A., Ghasabian, M., Ghoddousi, A., Heidelberg, A., Khorozyan, I., Malkhasyan, A., Manvelyan, K., Masoud, M., Moqanaki, E.M., Radeloff, V.C., Soofi, M., Weinberg, P., Zazanashvili, N. & Kuemmerle, T. (2019): Assessing niche overlap between domestic and threatened wild sheep to identify conservation priority areas. Diversity and Distributions, 25, 129-141, doi:10.1111/ddi.12839


Kuemmerle, T., Levers, C., Bleyhl, B., Olech, W., Perzanowski, K., Reusch, C. & Kramer-Schadt, S. (2018): One size does not fit all: European bison habitat selection across herds and spatial scales. Landscape Ecology, 33, 1559-1572. doi:10.1007/s10980-018-0684-2

Yin, H., Prishchepov, A.V., Kuemmerle, T., Bleyhl, B., Buchner, J., & Radeloff, V.C. (2018): Mapping agricultural land abandonment from spatial and temporal segmentation of Landsat time series. Remote Sensing of Environment, 210, 12-24. doi:10.1016/j.rse.2018.02.050


Bleyhl, B., Baumann, M., Griffiths, P., Heidelberg, A., Manvelyan, K., Radeloff, V.C., Zazanashvili, N., & Kuemmerle, T. (2017): "Assessing landscape connectivity for large mammals in the Caucasus using Landsat 8 seasonal image composites". Remote Sensing of Environment, 193, 193-203. doi:10.1016/j.rse.2017.03.001


Ziółkowska, E., Perzanowski, K., Bleyhl, B., Ostapowicz, K., & Kuemmerle, T. (2016): Understanding unexpected reintroduction outcomes: why aren't European bison do not colonize suitable habitat in the Carpathians? Biological Conservation, 195, 106–117.


Bleyhl, B., Sipko, T., Trepet, S., Bragina, E., Leitão, P.J., Radeloff, V.C., & Kuemmerle, T. (2015): Mapping seasonal European bison habitat in the Caucasus Mountains to identify potential reintroduction sites. Biological Conservation, 191, 83–92. doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2015.06.011