Water is Life

The mission of the Department of Limnology and Bio-Oceanography is to gain and communicate scientific knowledge on the ecology of pelagic and benthic life in inland waters and marine ecosystems ranging from mountain streams to saline lakes and from coastal seas to the deep ocean including hydrothermal vents. The main goal is to understand the biodiversity and ecosystem functions, and the interactions of these with the physical and chemical environment. We combine concepts and theory from ecology, physiology and biogeochemistry with cutting-edge technology to achieve this endeavor. Organisms we study include viruses, microbes and metazoans and their interactions from the population to the ecosystem level. The Department of Limnology and Bio-Oceanography also facilitates and supports education in Biology and Environmental Science at the University of Vienna and at an international level.

News & Events


NanoSIMS and tissue autoradiography reveal symbiont carbon fixation and organic carbon transfer to giant ciliate host


Organic Matter Procession by Microbial Communities in the Deep Ocean revealed by Metaproteomics


We celebrated our 5th anniversary of the Let’s Talk About Symbiosis Workshop on January 25, 2018. The invited speaker was Prof. Ehab Abouheif from the...

Department Structure

The Department of Limnology and Bio-Oceanography unites six different research labs. Their research focuses on the following fields: Fish Ecology, Benthic Communities & Bioindication, Phycology, Stream Biogeochemistry, Biological Oceanography and Marine Benthic Ecology. The department also participates in two Key Research Areas of the Faculty of Life Sciences - Microbial Ecology and Ecosystems and Symbioses.

Benthic Communities & Bioindication

We explore ecosystem structure and functioning in streams and floodplain waters...



Around 50% of atmospheric oxygen originates from algae.


Fish Ecology

We study fish ecology in rivers by undertaking experiments in the laboratory and in the field.


Stream Biogeochemistry

Streams connect the land to the oceans. Our research concerns the biogeochemical transformations that take place along this journey…


Microbial Oceanography

We focus on deciphering the metabolic activity of Bacteria and Archaea thriving in the open ocean …


Marine Benthic Ecology

Chemosynthesis thrives in a variety of marine benthic ecosystems at all depths of the oceans.