German Ornithological Society

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German Ornithological Society
purpose professional association
Chair: Wolfgang Fiedler
Establishment date: 1850
Number of members: approx. 2,300
Seat : Radolfzell

The German Ornithological Society e. V. (DO-G) is a scientific society for the promotion of ornithology . It was founded in 1850 and has the legal form of a non-profit registered association .


The DO-G was founded in October 1850 under Johann Friedrich Naumann , Eduard Baldamus (1812-1893) and Eugen Ferdinand von Homeyer in Leipzig . It emerged from the ornithological section established in 1845 within the Society of German Natural Scientists and Doctors . The first decade of its existence was overshadowed by disputes between Eduard Baldamus and Jean Louis Cabanis . Both claimed the title of an official organ of the association for their journals Naumannia (publisher: Baldamus) and Journal für Ornithologie (publisher: Cabanis). The dispute culminated in 1867 when Cabanis initiated the founding of a second association called the German Ornithological Society . Between 1870 and 1874 ( Ferdinand von Droste zu Hülshoff was a president of this transitional period ) the waves smoothed out and both societies merged in May 1875 in Braunschweig to form the General German Ornithological Society . EF von Homeyer, who had belonged to both clubs, was now president. This society was active until 1944.

In 1949 members of the DO-G met and agreed to resume the company's five-year dormant business. Since this seemed possible only with great difficulty in Soviet-occupied East Berlin , a decision was made in Freiburg i. Br. To found a new company under the original name of the Deutsche Ornithologen-Gesellschaft DO-G and in 1961 moved the company's headquarters from East Berlin to Radolfzell on Lake Constance. The new statutes neither provided for a formal successor to the General German Ornithological Society, nor was a merger legally possible. For this reason, both companies continue to exist with identical boards and bodies to this day. At a festive event in Leipzig in 2000, the German ornithologists therefore commemorated the 150th anniversary of their scientific society as well as the 50th anniversary of their re-establishment (1950) and the 125th anniversary of the German Ornithological Society.


In the founding years, the board of directors consisted of a 5-7-member body. In principle, all members of the Executive Board had the same rights as the elected chairman. A separate chairman of the conference was elected for the first annual meetings.

1st Chairman (President) since:

Since the re-establishment in 1949, the DO-G has had the following presidents:


The DO-G publishes two magazines. The main organ is the Journal of Ornithology , until 2003 (up to volume 144) under the German-language title Journal für Ornithologie . It was founded in 1853 and is the world's oldest surviving ornithological journal.

Together with the Institute for Bird Research “Vogelwarte Helgoland” in Wilhelmshaven, the Max Planck Institute for OrnithologyVogelwarte Radolfzell ” in Radolfzell, the “ Vogelwarte Hiddensee ” at the University of Greifswald and the “ Ringing Center Hiddensee ”, the DO-G also provides the Vogelwarte magazine (continuation of Der Vogelzug , founded in 1930).


The DO-G organizes an annual conference at different universities every year. It is the most important annual conference for ornithology in German-speaking countries. Since 2010, it has also been hosting a small annual conference for young people to make the DO-G more attractive for young ornithologists.

Awards and promotions

The German Ornithological Society regularly awards both prizes for funding research projects and awards for outstanding scientific work:


The German Ornithological Society is the initiator of the founding of the umbrella association of German avifaunists . It is closely linked , not least through its project groups, to numerous German and international research institutions and nature conservation organizations .


  • Einhard Bezzel: 125 volumes "Journal for Ornithology" . Journal für Ornithologie 125 (1984), pp. 381-391 text of the article
  • Einhard Bezzel: The board members and honorary members of the German Ornithological Society , Journal for Ornithology, Volume 129, 1988, pp. 32–42 text of the article
  • Jürgen Haffer : Group pictures of early annual meetings of the DOG (1872–1900) , Journal for Ornithology, Volume 144, No. 1, 2003, pp. 116–123, text of the article
  • Roland Prinzinger: 150 years of the "German Ornithological Society" . Journal für Ornithologie 142, Suppl. 1 (2001), pp. 2–26 Short version of the article

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