Main devision Wilhelmshaven

All scientists's work places are mainly located in Wilhelmshaven. Here, you also will find the administration, the large ornithological library and the Ringing Centre. Regular seminars are held here.

The old museum in the Gätke-hall is closed, but parts of the old Heinrich Gätke collection and other exhibits have been relocated to the UNESCO-Weltnaturerbe Wattenmeer Besucherzentrum.

Captive birds, laboratory and technical equipment

The IAR is well-equipped to keep captive birds for experiments and has an on-site laboratory in which food composition, metabolic and physiological parameters and DNA can be analysed. In addition, there is a taxidermy, as well as an electronics, wood and metal workshop.

The IAR also owns extensive telemetry equipment, an automatised registration system that records the presence of transponder-marked birds and their body mass, as well as radar equipment, infrared cameras, a remote video system and two special acoustic devices that can be used to record night-time migration.

The latest addition to the IARs equipment is an 'EchoMRI whole body composition analyser'. This machine uses only 0.5 to 3.2 minutes to measure fat mass, lean mass, free water and total water in live birds without requiring any sedation.


The library of the IAR is one of the most important ornithological libraries of Europe. It contains about 10.160 books, 15920 journals, 18900 offprints and 350 maps.

The library is open to guests, and if you're interested, you can register with our librarian or have a look at the online-catalog.