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C2 - Scientific Services and Synthesis

PI: Georg Miehe, Thomas Nauss, Lars Opgenoorth | Binyam Tesfaw Hailu
PhD-Students: Mohammed Ahmed Muhammed, Luise Wraase

Watch this video to get a brief insight into subproject C2 


The major tasks cover (i) the management of the overall data storage and exchange which will also ensure a sustainable usability of the collected data sets after the project and the (ii) promotion of both advanced within sub-project analysis and across-sub-project synthesis through the compilation of higher-level comprehensive data sets and the development and implementation of analysis workflows. For data storage, exchange and synthesis, this platform is implemented. Advanced analysis and synthesis workflows will be implemented to ensure efficient data curation and the compilation of additional baseline and higher-level data sets demanded but not provided by any of the projects or specifically required for overall synthesis activities.


  1. Support for establishing 10 Weatherstations at Bale Mts. National Park
  2. Establishement of a combined data base system
      ⦁ Inhabiting tables, documents, graphs, other formats and publications 
        e.g. archeological site conditions, soil profiles, rockshelter descriptions, coring, chronologies,
        geochemistry records and beetle compilations
      ⦁ Remote Sensing data e.g. Raster, Vector data and aerial images
      ⦁ Timeseries data from the weather stations and other installed sensors


  1. The coordination and lead in overall project synthesis of the environmental history across disciplines
  2. The continued database maintenance and curation of collected datasets including their final transfer to long-term data storage facilities (e.g. curation of the extensive beetle dataset including preparation of beetle species 3D scans as a digital reference collection)
  3. 3D mapping and model analysis (e.g. 3D mapping of Giant Molerat (GM) burrows)
  4. The provisioning of genetic and genomic resources and bioinformatics.
  5. The genomic analyses of ancient DNA from humans, animals, and plants 
      ⦁ to directly confirm the presence of MSA as well as Holocene foragers,
      ⦁ to resolve their phylogenetic position, and try to derive potential adaptations e.g. to high altitude,
      ⦁ to better resolve plant and animal taxonomy from sediment archives,
      ⦁ to reconstruct environmental change,
      ⦁ to model population dynamics of MSA GM and compare it to dynamics of extant populations,
      ⦁ to model population dynamics of Erica, and endemic afro-alpine plant taxa bound to GM mounds
Phot FOR 2358
Photo FOR 2358


Wraase, L., Reuber, V.M., Kurth, P., Fekadu, M., Demissew, S., Miehe, G., Opgenoorth, L., Selig, U., Woldu, Z., Zeuss, D., Schabo, D.G., Farwig, N. and Nauss, T. (2022): Remote sensing-supported mapping of the activity of a subterranean landscape engineer across an afro-alpine ecosystem. Remote Sens Ecol Conserv.

Reuber, V. M., Rey-Iglesia, A., Westbury, M. V., Cabrera, A. A., Farwig, N., Skovrind, M., Radim Šumbera, Wube, T., Opgenoorth L., Schabo D.G. & Lorenzen, E. D. (2021). Complete mitochondrial genome of the giant root-rat (Tachyoryctes macrocephalus). Mitochondrial DNA Part B, 6(8), 2191-2193.

Groos, A. R., Niederhauser, J., Wraase, L., Hänsel, F., Nauss, T., Akçar, N., and Veit, H. (2021): The enigma of relict large sorted stone stripes in the tropical Ethiopian Highlands, Earth Surf. Dynam., 9, 145–166.
DOI: 10.5194/esurf-9-145-2021

Ossendorf, G.; Groos, A.R.; Bromm, T.; Girma, M.T.; Glaser, B.; Lesur, J.; Schmidt, J.; Akçar, N.; Bekele, T.; Beldados, A.; Demissew, S.; Hadush Kahsay, T.; Nash, B.P.; Nauss, T.; Negash, A.; Nemomissa, S.; Veit, H.; Vogelsang, R.; Woldu, Z.; Zech, W.; Opgenoorth, L. and Miehe, G. (2019): Middle Stone Age foragers resided in high elevations of the glaciated Bale Mountains, Ethiopia. Science 365(6453), 583-587.
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaw8942

Hailu, B.T.; Gelaw, M.F. and Nauss, T. (2018): Availability of global and national scale land cover products and their accuracy in mountainous areas of Ethiopia: a review. Journal of Applied Remote Sensing 12(4), 041502.
DOI: 10.1117/1.JRS.12.041502

Kurth P. (2018) M.Sc.Thesis- Distribution patterns and the impact of the Giant Mole Rat (Tachyoryctes macrocephalus)on vegetation composition and plant biomass at the Sanetti Plateau in the Bale Mountains in South-Eeast Ethiopia, Philipps Universität Marburg.

Reber D, Gelaw M F, Detsch F, Vogelsang R, Tamrat Bekele, Nauss T, Miehe G (2018)
High-altitude rock shelters and settlements in an African alpine ecosystem: The Bale Mountains
National Park, Ethiopia. Human Ecology 46: 587-600.

Renken D. (2018) M.Sc.Thesis-The regenerative capacity of vegetation in the fire-shaped Ericaceous belt of the Bale Mountains, Philipps Universität Marburg.

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