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Department of Zoology


The Department of Zoology has a mission to: study a variety of animal species using multidisciplinary approaches and to suggest solutions to zoology and conservation problems by undertaking basic and also applied research. Our key objectives are to study animals using various scientific approaches in order to understand fundamental questions which nature offers. Furthermore, we concentrate on educating and training lab and field zoologists within the Zoology department, and to educate the public.



Invertebrate Zoology

Our research is focused on arachnids (František Šťáhlavský, Věra Opatová), molluscs (Lucie Juřičková), and protists (Ivan Čepička, Tomáš Pánek). We investigate their phylogeny, morphology, ecology, anatomy, karyology, taxonomy, and geographic distribution.

Head: RNDr. František Šťáhlavský, Ph.D.


Animal Evolutionary Biology

Unit of Animal Evolutionary Biology is a part of the Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science of the Charles University. Our research is focused on studies of general evolutionary issues including speciation, genetics of adaptation, sensory and reproductive biology, evolution of immunity and sexual selection. We use various animal species including mammals, birds, reptiles and fish as model organisms. Our research combines diverse methodological approaches ranging from population genetics, phylogenetics and comparative genomics through morphometry and comparative anatomy to ecological and ethological studies in the field. Much of our involvement also centres on teaching including practicals and field excursions.

Head: RNDr. Radka Reifová, Ph.D.



Biosystematics, taxonomy, phylogeny and higher classification, ontogeny, comparative morphology, bioindication, relationships of phytophagous insects and palaeoentomology. Wide range of research techniques is used, field studies, laboratory rearing, different laboratory techniques, including molecular and special paleontological ones. General conclusions, for example, reconstruction of phylogenetic hypotheses and anagenetic trends, use in pest control, reconstruction of local paleoenvironments, as well as detailed knowledge about populations and species, are results of research.

Head: doc. RNDr. Jakub Prokop, PhD.


Ethology and Ecology

We study different aspects of animal behaviour, ecology, ecophysiology, life-history, ecomorphology and phylogeny. We use wide range of research techniques: Field studies, laboratory rearing, computer analyses of animal behaviour and morphology, different laboratory techniques including molecular ones, etc. However, our research is problem-oriented, so we do not feel restricted to a specific method. General conclusions, for example, testing of hypotheses in an ecological evolutionary framework, as well as practical aspects of conservation biology are results of our work.

Head: prof. RNDr. Daniel Frynta, PhD.


Vertebrate Zoology

Our interests focus on morphology, genetics, biogeography, ecology, phylogenetics and systematics of vertebrates. A particular attention is given to the Palearctic fauna from both the fossil and recent point of view. Variation in the morphological and molecular characters is studied in relation to phylogeny and taxonomy. The activity patterns, behavioural mechanisms, distribution, population ecology and synecology are also studied alongside the long-term monitoring of changes in the population abundance and species composition. Unit of Vertebrate Zoology organizes university lectures, courses, and practicles in this subject as a part of zoology curriculum for BSc. and MSc. studies.

Head: Mgr. Robert Černý, Ph.D.


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