Extended deadline: ForBio course on Marine Non-Indigenous Species

ForBio is organising a course on Marine Non-Indigenous Species, May 21- 25, 2018, at the Drøbak Field Station, a short bus ride south of Oslo. We have extended the deadline for application to April 28th.


The aim of the Marine Non-Indigenous Species is to:

(1) provide theoretical background knowledge about marine non-indigenous species (NIS) including terminology, causes and potential consequences of NIS, the factors influencing translocations and success of colonisations and the potential vectors and the criteria for assessing NIS and

(2) identify the most common NIS / target species in Scandinavian waters using specimens from natual history collections and alive specimens collected around the station. Comparison of NIS and local similar species will be made. Identification cards and fact sheets will be provided.

Theoretical and practical lectures will be accompanied with discussions about the consequences of NIS to native environments, loss/increase of diversity and diseases.

Format: 5 day intensive course with theoretical and practical sessions (40 hours + preparation + final report/assignement- for those aiming to receive a certificate with ECTS)


Vivian Husa, Institute of Marine Research in Norway (IMR), Bergen

Arjan Gittenberger, Naturalis Biodiversity Centre, Leiden / GiMaRIS

Eivind Oug,  Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA), Oslo

Joann Porter, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburg

Maria Capa, ForBio  & NTNU University Museum, Trondheim


21 May

11.00 Welcome, presentation of the course schedule and logistics

11.15 Introduction (Important definitions, current knowledge of the problem at global scale, criteria for assessing NIS).

12.00 Vectors and factors influencing translocations

12.30 Management and legislation (monitoring programs, Nordic countries vs Europe rest of the world)

13.00 Lunch

14.00 Methods for assessing NIS (DNA barcoding or eDNA/metabarcoding).

14.30 Collecting techniques (eg. HELCOM/OSPAR)

15.00 Collecting along Drøbak & processing of samples. Animals kept alive in marine tanks.

22 May

9.00 Bryozoa . Introduction  (Biodiversity, Systematics, Ecology and Biology). Diagnostic features and terminology.

10.00 Lab work

12.00 NIS in Nordic waters

12.30 Lunch

13.30 Cnidaria & Tunicates. Introduction (Biodiversity, Systematics, Ecology and Biology). Diagnostic features and terminology

14.30 Lab work

16.30 NIS in Nordic waters

23 May

9.00 Mollusca. Introduction (Biodiversity, Systematics, Ecology and Biology). Diagnostic features and terminology

10.00 Lab work

12.00 NIS in Nordic waters

12.30 Lunch

13.30 Annelida. Introduction  (Biodiversity, Systematics, Ecology and Biology). Diagnostic features and terminology

14.30 Lab work

16.30 NIS in Nordic waters

24 May

9.00 Crustacea. Introduction (Biodiversity, Systematics, Ecology and Biology). Diagnostic features and terminology

10.00 Lab work

12.00 NIS in Nordic waters

12.30 Lunch

13.30 Continuation…

25 May

9.00 Algae. Introduction (Biodiversity, Systematics, Ecology and Biology). Diagnostic features and terminology

10.00 Lab work

12.00 NIS in Nordic waters

12.30 Lunch

12.30 Lunch

13.30 Other groups. Diagnostic features of a few species of fish (e.g Neobious…)

14.30  Wrap up, discussion  and conclusions


Maximum number of participants: 20

Course level: PhD students, Master students, researchers and biodiversity consultants.

Previous knowledge required. Taxonomic expertise in at least one of the main groups to be dealt with (Algae, Decapoda, Bryozoa, Molluscs, Annelida…) or a strong background in marine ecology and conservation.

Course materials.  Lab facilities (microscopes, marine tanks, collecting gear) are available at Drøbak Field station. Species determination literature will be provided.  Students are requested to bring their own forceps and dissecting equipment.

Assignment and credits: The course is equivalent to 2 ECTS. ForBio will provide certificates for those successfully complete the course assignment.

Registration: Please fill in the online application here. There is no course fee for ForBio members or associates. The course includes accommodation and meals for ForBio members and associates at the Drøbak Field Station. Travel is covered for ForBio members based at Norwegian institutes.

Find out about how to become a ForBio member here.

Extended application deadline is April 28, 2018.

Contact Maria Capa (maria.capa@ntnu.no) for more information.


PhD position Plant Systematics, Stockholm University

A PhD position is available at the Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences at Stockholm University. The successful candidate will work on evolution of cold tolerance in angiosperms using comparative analyses and common garden experimentation. Application deadline 23 April 2018. Please follow the links below for more information.

ForBio and STI course: Macro algae – systematics and taxonomy

Time and place: May 28, 2018 9:00 AM June 1, 2018 5:00 PM,

Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Infrastructure, Tjärnö, Strömstad, Sweden

Сourse scope:

The course will present and overview of the macro algae – marine and freshwater. We will cover the systematics, taxonomy and identification at different taxonomic levels. Sessions will include lectures, fieldwork and laboratory exercises. The students will learn various techniques for macro algae identification and sampling.

Learning targets:

  • General understanding of systematics and taxonomy of macro algae
  • Techniques for collecting macro algae
  • Techniques for species identification


Prof. Stein Fredriksen – Department of Biosciences, UiO

Dr. Gustav Johansson – Hydrophyta Ekologikonsult

Algologist Roland Bengtsson – Mikroalg

Maximum number of participants: 18, in case of more applicants, participants will be selected based on the scientific, educational and/or professional merit of the course, with priority given ForBio members and students/researchers enrolled in the Swedish Taxonomy Initiative (STI). Results of the selection process will be announced via e-mail ca. one week after the application deadline.

Target group: PhD students, master students, postdocs, researchers, consultants, government officials, museum staff with relevant background in biology.

Working language: English/Scandinavian

Assignement and credits: The course is equivalent to 2 ECTS. ForBio will provide certificates for those successfully completed the course assignment.

Registration: Please fill in the online application here. There is no course fee for ForBio members or associates. Travel is covered for ForBio members based at Norwegian institutions. Accommodation at the Sven Lovén Centre in Tjärnö is covered for all ForBio members.

Find out about how to become a ForBio member/associate here.

Application deadline: April 16th, 2018.

Contact: ForBio coordinator Nataliya Budaeva (nataliya.budaeva@uib.no) or

STI representative Malin Strand (malin.strand@slu.se)

PhD and postdoc positions at SU

From April 1st I am taking up a new position at the Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences, University of Stockholm. Already now, I am happy to announce two positions (a PhD and a postdoc) associated with the project Genome evolution in parasitic plants. If you have scientific questions you can direct them to me (gittep@snm.ku.dk), but for questions about University of Stockholm see the adds.

See more details at:




Biologiska mångfaldens dag med Svenska systematikföreningen


[English version following the Swedish text]

Är du intresserad av att arrangera aktiveter under Biologiska mångfaldens dag genom Svenska systematikföreningen?

Dagen instiftades i december 1993 och datum fastställdes 2000 till den 22 maj. Med dagen vill FN påminna om den biologiska mångfaldens betydelse för allt liv på jorden. Ungefär en femtedel av alla djurarter riskerar utrotning och i genomsnitt försvinner en art per månad.

Under den här dagen arrangeras aktiveter runt om i landet, och några exempel kan vara:

  • Utflykter till naturområden.
  • Bioblitz, där fauna och/eller flora för ett område inventeras under en kort men intensiv period.
  • Artbingo.
  • Tipspromenad.
  • Utbildningar och workshops.
  • Uppvaktning av politiker och panelsamtal.

Naturligtvis är möjligheterna inte begränsade till ovantsående förslag.

Vi medlemmar i Svenska systematikföreningen besitter en mängd djupa och varierande expertkunskaper, och det vore kul och spännande om det finns intresse att anordna lokala aktiviteter kring våra universitet, museum och andra arbetsplatser för att lyfta inte bara biologisk mångfald utan även i synnerhet systematikens roll.

Om du är intresserad så hör av dig till mig, Emma Wahlberg (emma.wahlberg@nrm.se) så kan vi samordna och utbyta idéer och förslag.

Läs mer om Biologiska mångfaldens dag:


Are you interested in organizing activities during the International Day for Biological Diversity through the Swedish Systematics Association?

The day was established in December 1993 and date was set in 2000 to May 22. During this day, the UN wants to remind us of the importance of biodiversity for all life on earth. Approximately one fifth of all animal species risk extinction and on average one species disappears per month.

During this day activities are organized around the country, and some examples may be:

  • Excursions to nature areas.
  • Bioblitz, where fauna and/or flora for an area are invented for a short but intense period.
  • Species bingo.
  • Quizzes.
  • Education and workshops.
  • Discussions with politicians and panel talks.

Of course, the possibilities are not limited to above mentioned examples.

We, the members of the Swedish Systematics Association, possess a deep and varied expertise, and it would be fun and exciting if there is an interest in organizing local activities around our universities, museums and other workplaces, not only to highlight biodiversity but also, in particular, the role of systematics.

If you are interested, please contact me, Emma Wahlberg (emma.wahlberg@nrm.se) and we may coordinate and exchange ideas and suggestions.

Read more about the International Day for Biological Diversity:
http://www.biomfdag.se/ (Swedish)
https://www.facebook.com/biomfdag/ (Swedish)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Day_for_Biological_Diversity (general information in English)


Open entomology position in Trondheim, Norway

The NTNU University Museum in Trondheim, Norway is seeking a highly motivated entomologist to fill a permanent associate professor position at our Department of Natural History. Please see this announcement for further details: https://www.jobbnorge.no/ledige-stillinger/stilling/145378/associate-professor-in-biological-diversity
Best regards,

Torbjørn Ekrem, PhD
Professor of biosystematics
NTNU University Museum, Department of Natural History

Two PhD student positions at GGBC in the EU ITN project ”Plant.ID”

Within the Gothenburg Global Biodiversity Centre, (GGBC) University of Gothenburg, Sweden, two PhD positions are open for application November 1st, 2017 until January 15th, 2018. The positions are part of the EU International Training Network programme PlantID, which announces 15 PhD student positions simultaneously. We seek highly motivated students to tackle taxonomic problems in the flowering plant genus Silene ranging from polyploidy, species delimitations, and it relations to conservation. The positions start in April 1st, 2018, and are fully funded including salary and social security benefits for four years. To be eligible to apply, you must not have been a resident in Sweden more than 12 months the last three years. See the below links for more details:

 Species, a taxonomic category distinct from the lineage concept? A case study on species delimitation in Silene sect. Dipterospermae in Southern Africa

 Polyploid phylogenetics under the multi-species coalescent


Bengt Oxelman

Christine Bacon

Petition for the protection of biodiversity (deadline on Sunday 5 p.m.)

Dear fellow systematists,

Many of you may have seen the recent article ‘We don’t need to save endangered species. Extinction is part of evolution.’ by R. Alexander Pyron in Washington Post, and re-published in several newspapers around the world.

If you would like to co-sign our Letter to the Editor of Washington Post please visit: http://www.protect-biodiversity.com/

We are now over 3000 co-signatories from more than 80 countries, but there are still few people from Sweden!

Best wishes and thanks for your support,

Alexandre Antonelli & Allison Perrigo

Gothenburg Global Biodiversity Centre


Please remind your collegues to create a profile at the web page!

Dear members of Svenska systematikföreningen,

Those of you who receive this message have obviously registered your contact details at our web page. However, you may have some collegues of yours who have paid the membership fee, but have not created any profile at the web page. That is unfortunate, because then we cannot keep track of which years these people have paid for, and they cannot check their membership status at the web page. So please remind the collegues you know to be members of the Systematikföreningen to create a profile if they have not done so.

All the best,

Mikael H