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Frauke Ecke

Frauke Ecke
Landscape ecologist with interest in especially small mammals, their predators and zoonoses, and how they are affected by environmental change


I am an Associate Professor and work as Senior Lecturer at the Department of Wildlife, Fish, and Environmental Studies at SLU, Umeå, where I also lead the research group on Rodent & Disease Ecology. Since July 2016, I am responsible for the Swedish National Environmental Monitoring Program for Small Rodents.


Focus of my research is on the population dynamics and landscape ecology of small mammals and their zoonoses in the forest landscape and the small mammals’ trophic interactions in time and space. Another important task is the analysis of the effects of species on their environment (especially beaver) and how species are affected by changes in their environment (landscape, climate; small mammals, Tengmalm’s Owl, Golden Eagle). In the different projects, I take advantage of data sampled within the Swedish National Environmental Monitoring Program for small rodents. The monitoring data are complemented by targeted field studies and experiments.


Researcher, Department of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden, 2008-2016.

Assistant Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering and Geosciences, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden, 2005-2008.

Postdoc, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Forestry Program, Laxenburg, Austria, 2004-2005.

PhD-student, Department of Civil Engineering, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden, 1997-2003.

M. Sc. in Biology, University of Uppsala, Sweden, 1996.


Main supervisor of PhD students:

Oded Levanoni, Biogeochemical and ecological processes in beaver dams, SLU 2011-2016.

Eva Husson, Landscape responses of aquatic vegetation, SLU 2010-2016.

Hussein Khalil, Ecological & environmental drivers of the emergence & transmission of the zoonosis nephropathia epidemica, SLU, 2013-2017.

Maidul Choudhury, Reduction of nitrogen discharges in mining processes and mitigating its environmental impact, SLU 2014-2018.

Selected publications

Sipari, S., Khalil, H., Magnusson, M., Evander, M., Hörnfeldt, B. & Ecke, F. (2021) Climate change accelerates winter transmission of a zoonotic pathogen. Ambio.

Ecke, F., Anders Johansson, Mats Forsman, Hussein Khalil, Magnus Magnusson, and Birger Hörnfeldt (2020) Selective predation by owls on infected bank voles (Myodes glareolus) as a possible sentinel of tularemia outbreaks. Vector Borne and Zoonotic Diseases 20(8): 630-632.

Ecke, F., J. P. Benskin, Å. M. M. Berglund, C. A. de Wit, E. Engström, M. M. Plassmann, I. Rodushkin, D. Sörlin and B. Hörnfeldt (2020) Spatio-temporal variation of metals and organic contaminants in bank voles (Myodes glareolus). Science of The Total Environment: 136353.

Ecke, F., Nematollahi Mahani, S.A., Evander, M., Hörnfeldt, B. and Khalil, H. (2019) Wildfire-induced short-term changes in a small mammal community increase prevalence of a zoonotic pathogen? Ecology and Evolution 9 (22): 12459-70.

Willby NJ, Law A, Levanoni O, Foster G & Ecke F (2018) Rewilding wetlands: beaver as agents of within-habitat heterogeneity and the responses of contrasting biota. Philosophical Transactions B: Biological Sciences 373:20170444.

Ecke F., Angeler D.G., Magnusson M., Khalil H., Hörnfeldt B. (2017) Dampening of population cycles in voles affects small mammal community structure, decreases diversity, and increases prevalence of a zoonotic disease. Ecology and Evolution 7, 5331–5342.

Ecke F., Levanoni O., Audet J., Carlson P., Eklöf K., Hartman G., et al. (2017) Meta-analysis of environmental effects of beaver in relation to artificial dams. Environmental Research Letters 12, 113002.

Ecke F., Singh N.J., Arnemo J.M., Bignert A., Helander B., Berglund Å.M.M., et al. (2017) Sub-lethal lead exposure alters movement behavior in free-ranging Golden Eagles. Environmental Science & Technology 51, 5729−5736.

Khalil H., Olsson G., Magnusson M., Evander M., Hörnfeldt B., Ecke F. (2017) Spatial prediction and validation of zoonotic hazard through micro-habitat properties: where does Puumala hantavirus hole – up? BMC Infectious Diseases 17, 523.

Khalil, H., Ecke, F., Evander, M., Magnusson, M. & Hörnfeldt, B. (2016) Declining ecosystem health and the dilution effect. Scientific Reports, 6, 31314.

Khalil, H., Ecke, F., Evander, M. & Hörnfeldt, B. (2016) Selective predation on hantavirus-infected voles by owls and confounding effects from landscape properties. Oecologia, 181: 597-606.

Levanoni, O., Bishop, K., McKie, B., Hartman, G., Eklöf, K. & Ecke, F. (2015) Impact of beaver pond colonization history on methylmercury concentrations in surface water. Environmental Science & Technology, 49: 12679–12687.

Magnusson, M., Hörnfeldt, B. & Ecke, F. (2015) Evidence for different drivers behind long-term decline and depression of density in cyclic voles. Population Ecology, 57:569-580.

Khalil, H., Olsson, G., Ecke, F., Evander, M., Hjertqvist, M., Magnusson, M., Ottosson Löfvenius, M. & Hörnfeldt, B. 2014. The importance of bank vole density and rainy winters in predicting nephropathia epidemica incidence in northern Sweden. PLoS ONE, 9: e111663.

Husson, E., Hagner, O. & Ecke, F. (2014). Unmanned aircraft systems help to map aquatic vegetation. Applied Vegetation Science 17: 567-577.

Ecke, F., Henry, A. & Danell, K. (2014) Landscape-based prediction of the occurrence of the invasive muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus). Annales Zoologici Fennici 51: 325-334.

Ecke, F., Magnusson, M. & Hörnfeldt, B. (2013) Spatiotemporal changes in the landscape structure of forests in northern Sweden. Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research 28 (7): 651-667.

Cornulier, T., Yoccoz, N. G., Bretagnolle, V., Brommer, J. E., Butet, A., Ecke, F., Elston, D.A., Framstad, E., Henttonen, H., Hörnfeldt, B., Huitu, O., Imholt, C., Ims, R. A., Jacob, J., Jedrzejewska, B., Millon, A., Petty, S. J., Pietiäinen, H., Tkadlec, E., Zub, K., & Lambin, X. 2013. Europe-wide dampening of population cycles in keystone herbivores. Science. 5 April 2013: Vol. 340 no. 6128 pp. 63-66.

Bergsten, A., Bodin, Ö. & Ecke, F. (2013) Protected areas in a landscape dominated by logging – A connectivity analysis that integrates varying protection levels with competition–colonization tradeoffs. Biological Conservation 160: 279-288.

Rodushkin, I., Engström, E., Sörlin, D., Baxter, D., Hörnfeldt, B., Nyholm, E. & Ecke, F. (2011) Uptake and accumulation of anthropogenic Os in free-living bank voles (Myodes glareolus). Water Air and Soil Pollution 218: 603-610.

Ecke, F., Christensen, P, Rentz, R., Sandström, P., Nilsson, M. & Hörnfeldt, B. (2010) Landscape structure and the long-term decline of the grey-sided vole. Landscape Ecology: 25: 551-560.

Ecke, F., Christensen, P., Hörnfeldt, B. & Sandström, P. (2006) Identification of landscape elements related to local declines of a boreal grey-sided vole population. Landscape Ecology 21: 485 - 497.

Ecke, F., Löfgren, O. & Sörlin, D. (2002) Population dynamics of small mammals in relation to forest age and structural habitat factors in northern Sweden. Journal of Applied Ecology 39: 781-792.