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Kathrin Litza

Research Associate
Foto Kathrin Litza

I am interested in the ecology and the distribution patterns of herbaceous plants, in particular in forests and other wooded habitats. My PhD project focuses on herbaceous communities in hedgerows and how their species composition is changing over the years. Another aspect of my project is the question if hedgerows can form a suitable habitat for forest plants and how their diversity is influenced by former and today's landscape structures. My studies are conducted in east Schleswig-Holstein which is famous for its hedgerow-rich landscape.


    Working Group 
    Vegetation Ecology &
    Conservation Biology

    Department 2 (Biology/Chemistry)
    University Bremen
    Leobener Str. 5
    Building NW 2
    D-28359 Bremen


    2015 - 2019Grundkurs Ökologie
    2014 - 2019Formenkenntnis Pflanzen
    2015 - 2018Experimental Design and Data Analysis
    2015 - 2018Ökologisches Fortgeschrittenen Praktikum inkl. statistischer Datenauswertung
    2015Ökologisches Geländepraktikum

    Statistik für Naturwissenschaftler

    2011 - 2012Struktur und Funktion wirbelloser Tiere

    Litza, K., Alignier, A., Closset-Kopp, D., Ernoult, A., Mony, C., Osthaus, M., Staley, J., van Den Berge, S., Vanneste, T. & Diekmann, M. (2022). Hedgerows as a habitat for forest plant species in the agricultural landscape of Europe. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 326: 107809.

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2020). The effect of hedgerow density on habitat quality distorts species-area relationships and the analysis of extinction debts in hedgerows. Landscape Ecology, 35(5), 1187-1198.

    Vanneste, T., Govaert, S., De Kesel, W., Van Den Berge, S., Vangansbeke, P., Meeussen, C., Brunet, J., Cousins, S.A.O., Decocq, G., Diekmann, M., Graae, B. J., Hedwall, P.-O., Heinken, T., Helsen, K., Kapás, R., Lenoir, J., Liira, J., Lindmo, S., Litza, K., Naaf, T., Orczewska, A., Plue, J., Wulf, M., Verheyen, K. & de Frenne, P. (2020). Plant diversity in hedgerows and road verges across Europe. Journal of Applied Ecology.

    Vanneste, T., Govaert, S., Spicher, F., Brunet, J., Cousins, S.A.O, Decocq, G., Diekmann, M., Graae, B.J., Hedwall, P.-O., Kapás, R.E., Lenoir, J., Liira, J., Lindmo, S., Litza, K., Naaf, T., Orczewska, A., Plue, J., Wulf, M., Verheyen, K. & De Frenne, P. (2020). Contrasting microclimates among hedgerows and woodlands across temperate Europe. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 281: 107818.

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2019). Hedgerow age affects the species richness of herbaceous forest plants. Journal of Vegetation Sciences, 30: 553-563.

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2017). Resurveying hedgerows in Northern Germany: Plant community shifts over the past 50 years. Biological Conservation, 206: 226-235.

    Diekmann, M., Härdtle, W. & Stoltenberg, K. (2014). Verbreitung und Ökologie des Scheiden Gelbsterns (Gagea spathacea). Abhandlungen des Naturwissenschaftlichen Vereins zu Bremen, 47/2: 355-365.


    ResearchGate Profil

    Personal Website

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2021): Hedgerows across Europe: Forest plant species in the context of management and regional climate. 63rd IAVS Virtual Symposium (20.-23.09.2021).

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2019): Historical or present-day conditions - which variables affect the forest specialist diversity in hedgerows?  62nd Annual Symposium of the International Association for Vegetation Science (IAVS) (14.-19.07.201), Bremen, Germany.

    Honorable Mention - Young Scientist Oral Presentation Award

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2018): Only a matter of time: Comparing recent with ancient hedgerows. 17th Meeting of the German Working Group on Vegetation databases (14. - 16.03.18), Jena, Germany.

    Litza, K. & Diekmann, M. (2017): Well-hedged by hedgerows? How traits determine the forest herb community in hedgerows. 60th Annual Symposium of the International Association for Vegetation Science (IAVS) (20.-24.06.2017), Palermo, Italy.

    Stoltenberg, K. & Diekmann, M. (2016). Game of Thorns: Historical data reveals community shift in hedgerows. 59th Annual Symposium of the International Association for Vegetation Science (IAVS) (12.-17.06.2016), Pirenópolis, Brazil.

    Stoltenberg, K. & Diekmann, M. (2016). Resurveying hedgerows: Community shifts over the past 50 years. 15th Meeting of the German Working Group on Vegetation databases (02.-04.03.16), Potsdam, Germany.




    Litza, K. (15th November 2019). Knicks in Schleswig-Holstein: Kulturerbe und Lebensraum. Info-Veranstaltung des SSW und Bündnis 90/Die Grünen mit anschließender Podiumsdiskussion, Schaalby. (Presse-Link:
    Litza, K. (26th February 2018). Netzwerke der Vielfalt: Forschung zum Wandel der Vegetation von Wallhecken (Knicks) in Schleswig-Holstein. Ringvorlesung des Naturwissenschaflicher Verein zu Bremen, Bremen.
    Litza, K. (12th February 2018). Knicks im Wandel: Vom lebenden Zaun zum geschützten Ökosystem. Rotary Club Segeberg, Högersdorf.
    Stoltenberg, K. (21st March 2016). Knicks im Wandel der Zeiten: Lebensraum für krautige Waldarten? Jahreshauptversammlung des Passopp, Garbek.
    since 2015Research assistant/PhD student at the University of Bremen in the working group of Vegetation Ecology and Conservation Biology
    2012 - 2014

    Master of Science, Ecology, University of Bremen

    Lund University in Sweden as an exchange (ERASMUS) student
    (Aug. 2013 – Jan. 2014)

    Master Thesis: Analysis of the Seed Bank and its 
    Persistence of the two Endangered River Corridor Plants 
    Euphorbia palustris and Veronica longifolia

    2009 - 2012

    Bachelor of Science, Biology/Mathematics, University of Bremen

    Bachelor Thesis: Ökologie und Standortansprüche des Scheiden-Goldsterns (Gagea spathacea) im Weser-Elbe-Gebiet (Ecology and habitat requirements of Gagea spathacea in the Weser-Elbe triangle)

    2006 - 2009Abitur, Städtisches Gymnasium Bad Segeberg
    Since 2017AG Geobotanik Schleswig-Holstein und Hamburg
    Since 2016DocNetwork "ScienceChat" (2016 - 2019: Spokesperson)
    Since 2015IAVS and IAVS Young Scientists
    Since 2014Board member of Naturwissenschaftlichen Verein zu Bremen.
    (NWV) – Protokollführung