Speciation in Ancient Lakes 5

SIAL 5, September 711, 2009 in Ohrid (Macedonia)


SIAL 5, was held from 7-11 September, 2009 at one of the world’s best recognized ancient lakes – Lake Ohrid – jointly organized by the Hydrobiological Institute in Ohrid and the Justus Liebig University in Giessen. 75 scientists from 13 countries attended the meeting.

Lake Ohrid is probably 2–5 million years old and harbours approximately 1,200 native species. In terms of endemic biodiversity, the lake is with 212 known endemic species and a surface area of 358 km2 one of the most diverse lakes in the world, taking surface area into account (see PDF file of introductory talk by Wilke & Trajanowski).

Of course, SIAL5 did not exclusively deal with Lake Ohrid but with a whole variety of old lakes in the world, both extant (ancient lakes) and fossil (paleolakes). The presentations covered diverse topics including results of the MOLARCH project, molecular advances in cichlid research and sympatric speciation, the role of geochemical processes in speciation, and ancient lake deep drilling projects (PDF of program).

The abstracts of SIAL 5 were made available as a special issue of Review – HBI Ohrid (Albrecht et al., 2009). Ten selected full papers were published in an Hydrobiologia special issue edited by Sturmbauer, Albrecht, Trajanovski & Wilke.

We would like to thank the employees of the Hydrobiological Institute and the people of Ohrid for their support and hospitality!

(click to enlarge)
Opening ceremony, St. Sophia church in old town Ohrid (photograph: Video Studio Przin, Ohrid)