Department of Animal Ecology and Tropical Biology

Prof. Dr. Thomas Schmitt

Prof. Dr. Thomas Schmitt

Head of Chemical Ecology Group
Department of Animal Ecology and Tropical Biology
Biocentre, University of Würzburg
Am hubland
97074 Würzburg
Room: C016

  • Evolution of chemical communication in insects

  • Evolution of cuticular hydrocarbon profiles in insects

  • Functional aspects of chemical interactions in animals and plants

  • since 2013  Professor of Animal Ecology at the University of Würzburg
  • 2012 – 2013  Research Associate at the Technical University of Darmstadt
  • 2010  Habilitation in Evolutionary Biology and Animal Ecology at the University of Freiburg
  • 2004 – 2012  Research Associate at the University of Freiburg
  • 2004  Doctoral thesis: „Communication in the Hymenoptera: Chemistry, Ecology, and Evolution“ at the University of Würzburg
  • 2000  Diploma thesis: „Chemical ecology and niche specialization in West African dung beetles” at the University of Würzburg
  • 1994 – 2000  Study of Biology at the University of Würzburg and SUNY Albany, NY, USA
  • 1992 – 1994  Study of Chemistry at the University of Würzburg

2023[ to top ]
  • Maihoff F, Sahler S, Schoger S, Brenzinger K, Kallnik K, Sauer N, Bofinger L, Schmitt T, Nooten SS, Classen A (2023) Cuticular hydrocarbons of alpine bumble bees (Hymenoptera: Bombus) are species-specific, but show little evidence of elevation-related climate adaptation. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 11.
2022[ to top ]
  • Boff S, Conrad T, Raizer J, Wehrhahn M, Bayer M, Friedel A, Theodorou P, Schmitt T, Lupi D (2022) Low toxicity crop fungicide (fenbuconazole) impacts reproductive male quality signals leading to a reduction of mating success in a wild solitary bee. Journal of Applied Ecology.
  • Maihoff F, Bohlke K, Brockmann A, Schmitt T (2022) Increased complexity of worker CHC profiles in Apis dorsata correlates with nesting ecology. PLOS ONE 17: 1-17.
2021[ to top ]
  • Alciatore G, Ugelvig LV, Frank E, Bidaux J, Gal A, Schmitt T, Kronauer DJC, Ulrich Y (2021) Immune challenges increase network centrality in a queenless ant. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 288: 20211456.
  • Buellesbach J, Diao W, Schmitt T, Beukeboom LW (2021) Micro-climate correlations and conserved sexual dimorphism of cuticular hydrocarbons in European populations of the jewel wasp Nasonia vitripennis. Ecological Entomology.
  • Hartke J, Waldvogel A-M, Sprenger PP, Schmitt T, Menzel F, Pfenninger M, Feldmeyer B (2021) Little parallelism in genomic signatures of local adaptation in two sympatric, cryptic sister species. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 34: 937-952.
  • Hood GR, Jennings JH, Bruzzese DJ, Beehler M, Schmitt T, Feder JL, Etges WJ (2021) Cuticular hydrocarbon variation among Rhagoletis fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae): implications for premating reproductive isolation and ecological speciation. Ecological Entomology.
  • Mayr AV, Keller A, Peters MK, Grimmer G, Krischke B, Geyer M, Schmitt T, Steffan-Dewenter I (2021) Cryptic species and hidden ecological interactions of halictine bees along an elevational gradient. Ecology and Evolution 11: 7700-7712.
  • Moris VC, Christmann K, Wirtgen A, Belokobylskij SA, Berg A, Liebig W-H, Soon V, Baur H, Schmitt T, Niehuis O (2021) Cuticular hydrocarbons on old museum specimens of the spiny mason wasp, Odynerus spinipes (Hymenoptera: Vespidae: Eumeninae), shed light on the distribution and on regional frequencies of distinct chemotypes. Chemoecology 31: 311-322.
  • Pauli T, Meusemann K, Kukowka S, Sann M, Donath A, Mayer C, Oeyen JP, Ballesteros Y, Berg A, van den Berghe E, Escalona HE, Guglielmino A, Niehuis M, Olmi M, Podsiadlowski L, Polidori C, de Rond J, Rosa P, Schmitt T, Strumia F, Wurdack M, Liu S, Zhou X, Misof B, Peters RS, Niehuis O (2021) Analysis of RNA-Seq, DNA Target Enrichment, and Sanger Nucleotide Sequence Data Resolves Deep Splits in the Phylogeny of Cuckoo Wasps (Hymenoptera: Chrysididae). Insect Systematics and Diversity 5: 1.
  • Soon V, Castillo-Cajas RF, Johansson N, Paukkunen J, Rosa P, Ødegaard F, Schmitt T, Niehuis O (2021) Cuticular Hydrocarbon Profile Analyses Help Clarify the Species Identity of Dry-Mounted Cuckoo Wasps (Hymenoptera: Chrysididae), Including Type Material, and Reveal Evidence for a Cryptic Species. Insect Systematics and Diversity 5: 1.
2020[ to top ]
  • Ala‐Honkola O, Kauranen H, Tyukmaeva V, Boetzl FA, Hoikkala A, Schmitt T (2020) Diapause affects cuticular hydrocarbon composition and mating behavior of both sexes in \textit{{Drosophila} montana}. Insect Science 27: 304-316.
  • Polidori C, Ballesteros Y, Wurdack M, Asís JD, Tormos J, Baños-Picón L, Schmitt T (2020) Low Host Specialization in the Cuckoo Wasp, Parnopes grandior, Weakens Chemical Mimicry but Does Not Lead to Local Adaption. Insects 11: 136.
  • Polidori C, Geyer M, Schmitt T (2020) Do Sphecodes cuckoo bees use chemical insignificance to invade the nests of their social Lasioglossum bee hosts?. Apidologie 51: 147-162.
  • Sprenger PP, Müsse C, Hartke J, Feldmeyer B, Schmitt T, Gebauer G, Menzel F (2020) Dinner with the roommates: trophic niche differentiation and competition in a mutualistic ant-ant association. Ecological Entomology 46: 562-572.
  • Weithmann S, von Hoermann C, Schmitt T, Steiger S, Ayasse M (2020) The Attraction of the Dung Beetle Anoplotrupes stercorosus (Coleoptera: Geotrupidae) to Volatiles from Vertebrate Cadavers. Insects 11: 476.
  • Yusuf A, Frank E, Fombong A, Pirk C, Crewe R, Schmitt T, Strube-Bloss M, Gordon I, B T (2020) Odour-mediated group organisation and coordination in the termite raiding ant Megaponera analis (Mayr). Chemical Senses 45: 635-644.
2019[ to top ]
  • Drescher N, Klein A-M, Schmitt T, Leonhardt SD (2019) A clue on bee glue: {New} insight into the sources and factors driving resin intake in honeybees ({Apis} mellifera). PLOS ONE 14: e0210594.
  • Hartke J, Schell T, Jongepier E, Schmidt H, Sprenger PP, Paule J, Bornberg-Bauer E, Schmitt T, Menzel F, Pfenninger M, Feldmeyer B (2019) Hybrid {Genome} {Assembly} of a {Neotropical} {Mutualistic} {Ant}. Genome Biology and Evolution 11: 2306-2311.
  • Hartke J, Sprenger PP, Sahm J, Winterberg H, Orivel J, Baur H, Beuerle T, Schmitt T, Feldmeyer B, Menzel F (2019) Cuticular hydrocarbons as potential mediators of cryptic species divergence in a mutualistic ant association. Ecology and Evolution 9: 9160-9176.
  • Kämper W, Kaluza BF, Wallace H, Schmitt T, Leonhardt SD (2019) Habitats shape the cuticular chemical profiles of stingless bees. Chemoecology 29: 125-133.
  • Pauli T, Castillo-Cajas RF, Rosa P, Kukowka S, Berg A, van den Berghe E, Fornoff F, Hopfenmüller S, Niehuis M, Peters RS, Staab M, Strumia F, Tischendorf S, Schmitt T, Niehuis O (2019) Phylogenetic analysis of cuckoo wasps ({Hymenoptera}: {Chrysididae}) reveals a partially artificial classification at the genus level and a species-rich clade of bee parasitoids: {Phylogeny} and host associations of cuckoo wasps. Systematic Entomology 44: 322-335.
  • Poikela N, Kinnunen J, Wurdack M, Kauranen H, Schmitt T, Kankare M, Snook RR, Hoikkala A (2019) Strength of sexual and postmating prezygotic barriers varies between sympatric populations with different histories and species abundances. Evolution 73: 1182-1199.
  • Sprenger PP, Hartke J, Feldmeyer B, Orivel J, Schmitt T, Menzel F (2019) Influence of {Mutualistic} {Lifestyle}, {Mutualistic} {Partner}, and {Climate} on {Cuticular} {Hydrocarbon} {Profiles} in {Parabiotic} {Ants}. Journal of Chemical Ecology 45: 741-754.
  • Streinzer M, Chakravorty J, Neumayer J, Megu K, Narah J, Schmitt T, Bharti H, Spaethe J, Brockmann A (2019) Species composition and elevational distribution of bumble bees ({Hymenoptera}, {Apidae}, {Bombus} {Latreille}) in the {East} {Himalaya}, {Arunachal} {Pradesh}, {India}. ZooKeys 851: 71-89.
2018[ to top ]
  • Buellesbach J, Cash E, Schmitt T (2018) Communication, {Insects}. In Encyclopedia of {Reproduction} bll 78-83.
  • Buellesbach J, Vetter SG, Schmitt T (2018) Differences in the reliance on cuticular hydrocarbons as sexual signaling and species discrimination cues in parasitoid wasps. Frontiers in Zoology 15: 22.
  • Frank K, Brückner A, Blüthgen N, Schmitt T (2018) In search of cues: dung beetle attraction and the significance of volatile composition of dung. Chemoecology 28: 145-152.
  • Frank K, Krell F-T, Slade EM, Raine EH, Chiew LY, Schmitt T, Vairappan CS, Walter P, Blüthgen N (2018) Global dung webs: high trophic generalism of dung beetles along the latitudinal diversity gradient. Ecology Letters 21: 1229-1236.
  • Junker RR, Kuppler J, Amo L, Blande JD, Borges RM, van Dam NM, Dicke M, Dötterl S, Ehlers BK, Etl F, Gershenzon J, Glinwood R, Gols R, Groot AT, Heil M, Hoffmeister M, Holopainen JK, Jarau S, John L, Kessler A, Knudsen JT, Kost C, Larue-Kontic A-AC, Leonhardt SD, Lucas-Barbosa D, Majetic CJ, Menzel F, Parachnowitsch AL, Pasquet RS, Poelman EH, Raguso RA, Ruther J, Schiestl FP, Schmitt T, Tholl D, Unsicker SB, Verhulst N, Visser ME, Weldegergis BT, Köllner TG (2018) Covariation and phenotypic integration in chemical communication displays: biosynthetic constraints and eco-evolutionary implications. New Phytologist 220: 739-749.
  • Pull C, Ugelvig L, Wiesenhofer F, Grasse A, Tragust S, Schmitt T, Brown M, Cremer S (2018) Destructive disinfection of infected brood prevents systemic disease spread in ant colonies. Elife 7: e32073.
2017[ to top ]
  • Bank S, Sann M, Mayer C, Meusemann K, Donath A, Podsiadlowski L, Kozlov A, Petersen M, Krogmann L, Meier R, Rosa P, Schmitt T, Wurdack M, Liu S, Zhou X, Misof B, Peters RS, Niehuis O (2017) Transcriptome and target {DNA} enrichment sequence data provide new insights into the phylogeny of vespid wasps ({Hymenoptera}: {Aculeata}: {Vespidae}). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 116: 213-226.
  • Frank ET, Schmitt T, Hovestadt T, Mitesser O, Stiegler J, Linsenmair KE (2017) Saving the injured: {Rescue} behavior in the termite-hunting ant \textit{{Megaponera} analis}. Science Advances 3: e1602187.
  • Frank K, Hülsmann M, Assmann T, Schmitt T, Blüthgen N (2017) Land use affects dung beetle communities and their ecosystem service in forests and grasslands. Agriculture, Ecosystems \& Environment 243: 114-122.
  • Haberer W, Schmitt T, Schreier P, Eggert A-K, Müller JK (2017) Volatiles Emitted by Calling Males of Burying Beetles and Ptomascopus morio (Coleoptera: Silphidae: Nicrophorinae) Are Biogenetically Related. Journal of Chemical Ecology 43: 971-977.
  • Hudson LN, Newbold T, Contu S, Hill SLL, Lysenko I, De Palma A, Phillips HRP, Alhusseini TI, Bedford FE, Bennett DJ, Booth H, Burton VJ, Chng CWT, Choimes A, Correia DLP, Day J, Echeverría-Londoño S, Emerson SR, Gao D, Garon M, Harrison MLK, Ingram DJ, Jung M, Kemp V, Kirkpatrick L, Martin CD, Pan Y, Pask-Hale GD, Pynegar EL, Robinson AN, Sanchez-Ortiz K, Senior RA, Simmons BI, White HJ, Zhang H, Aben J, Abrahamczyk S, Adum GB, Aguilar-Barquero V, Aizen MA, Albertos B, Alcala EL, del Mar Alguacil M, Alignier A, Ancrenaz M, Andersen AN, Arbeláez-Cortés E, Armbrecht I, Arroyo-Rodríguez V, Aumann T, Axmacher JC, Azhar B, Azpiroz AB, Baeten L, Bakayoko A, Báldi A, Banks JE, Baral SK, Barlow J, Barratt BIP, Barrico L, Bartolommei P, Barton DM, Basset Y, Batáry P, Bates AJ, Baur B, Bayne EM, Beja P, Benedick S, Berg Åke, Bernard H, Berry NJ, Bhatt D, Bicknell JE, Bihn JH, Blake RJ, Bobo KS, Bóçon R, Boekhout T, Böhning-Gaese K, Bonham KJ, Borges PAV, Borges SH, Boutin C, Bouyer J, Bragagnolo C, Brandt JS, Brearley FQ, Brito I, Bros V, Brunet J, Buczkowski G, Buddle CM, Bugter R, Buscardo E, Buse J, Cabra-García J, Cáceres NC, Cagle NL, Calviño-Cancela M, Cameron SA, Cancello EM, Caparrós R, Cardoso P, Carpenter D, Carrijo TF, Carvalho AL, Cassano CR, Castro H, Castro-Luna AA, Rolando CB, Cerezo A, Chapman KA, Chauvat M, Christensen M, Clarke FM, Cleary DF, Colombo G, Connop SP, Craig MD, Cruz-López L, Cunningham SA, D’Aniello B, D’Cruze N, da Silva PG, Dallimer M, Danquah E, Darvill B, Dauber J, Davis ALV, Dawson J, de Sassi C, de Thoisy B, Deheuvels O, Dejean A, Devineau J-L, Diekötter T, Dolia JV, Domínguez E, Dominguez-Haydar Y, Dorn S, Draper I, Dreber N, Dumont B, Dures SG, Dynesius M, Edenius L, Eggleton P, Eigenbrod F, Elek Z, Entling MH, Esler KJ, de Lima RF, Faruk A, Farwig N, Fayle TM, Felicioli A, Felton AM, Fensham RJ, Fernandez IC, Ferreira CC, Ficetola GF, Fiera C, Filgueiras BKC, Fırıncıoğlu HK, Flaspohler D, Floren A, Fonte SJ, Fournier A, Fowler RE, Franzén M, Fraser LH, Fredriksson GM, Freire GB, Frizzo TLM, Fukuda D, Furlani D, Gaigher R, Ganzhorn JU, García KP, Garcia-R JC, Garden JG, Garilleti R, Ge B-M, Gendreau-Berthiaume B, Gerard PJ, Gheler-Costa C, Gilbert B, Giordani P, Giordano S, Golodets C, Gomes LGL, Gould RK, Goulson D, Gove AD, Granjon L, Grass I, Gray CL, Grogan J, Gu W, Guardiola M, Gunawardene NR, Gutierrez AG, Gutiérrez-Lamus DL, Haarmeyer DH, Hanley ME, Hanson T, Hashim NR, Hassan SN, Hatfield RG, Hawes JE, Hayward MW, Hébert C, Helden AJ, Henden J-A, Henschel P, Hernández L, Herrera JP, Herrmann F, Herzog F, Higuera-Diaz D, Hilje B, Höfer H, Hoffmann A, Horgan FG, Hornung E, Horváth R, Hylander K, Isaacs-Cubides P, Ishida H, Ishitani M, Jacobs CT, Jaramillo VJ, Jauker B, Hernández FJ, Johnson MF, Jolli V, Jonsell M, Juliani SN, Jung TS, Kapoor V, Kappes H, Kati V, Katovai E, Kellner K, Kessler M, Kirby KR, Kittle AM, Knight ME, Knop E, Kohler F, Koivula M, Kolb A, Kone M, Kőrösi Ádám, Krauss J, Kumar A, Kumar R, Kurz DJ, Kutt AS, Lachat T, Lantschner V, Lara F, Lasky JR, Latta SC, Laurance WF, Lavelle P, Le Féon V, LeBuhn G, Légaré J-P, Lehouck V, Lencinas MV, Lentini PE, Letcher SG, Li Q, Litchwark SA, Littlewood NA, Liu Y, Lo-Man-Hung N, López-Quintero CA, Louhaichi M, Lövei GL, Lucas-Borja ME, Luja VH, Luskin MS, MacSwiney G MC, Maeto K, Magura T, Mallari NA, Malone LA, Malonza PK, Malumbres-Olarte J, Mandujano S, Måren IE, Marin-Spiotta E, Marsh CJ, Marshall EJP, Martínez E, Martínez Pastur G, Moreno Mateos D, Mayfield MM, Mazimpaka V, McCarthy JL, McCarthy KP, McFrederick QS, McNamara S, Medina NG, Medina R, Mena JL, Mico E, Mikusinski G, Milder JC, Miller JR, Miranda-Esquivel DR, Moir ML, Morales CL, Muchane MN, Muchane M, Mudri-Stojnic S, Munira AN, Muoñz-Alonso A, Munyekenye BF, Naidoo R, Naithani A, Nakagawa M, Nakamura A, Nakashima Y, Naoe S, Nates-Parra G, Navarrete Gutierrez DA, Navarro-Iriarte L, Ndang’ang’a PK, Neuschulz EL, Ngai JT, Nicolas V, Nilsson SG, Noreika N, Norfolk O, Noriega JA, Norton DA, Nöske NM, Nowakowski AJ, Numa C, O’Dea N, O’Farrell PJ, Oduro W, Oertli S, Ofori-Boateng C, Oke CO, Oostra V, Osgathorpe LM, Otavo SE, Page NV, Paritsis J, Parra-H A, Parry L, Pe’er G, Pearman PB, Pelegrin N, Pélissier R, Peres CA, Peri PL, Persson AS, Petanidou T, Peters MK, Pethiyagoda RS, Phalan B, Philips TK, Pillsbury FC, Pincheira-Ulbrich J, Pineda E, Pino J, Pizarro-Araya J, Plumptre AJ, Poggio SL, Politi N, Pons P, Poveda K, Power EF, Presley SJ, Proença V, Quaranta M, Quintero C, Rader R, Ramesh BR, Ramirez-Pinilla MP, Ranganathan J, Rasmussen C, Redpath-Downing NA, Reid JL, Reis YT, Rey Benayas JM, Rey-Velasco JC, Reynolds C, Ribeiro DB, Richards MH, Richardson BA, Richardson MJ, Ríos RM, Robinson R, Robles CA, Römbke J, Romero-Duque LP, Rös M, Rosselli L, Rossiter SJ, Roth DS, Roulston TH, Rousseau L, Rubio AV, Ruel J-C, Sadler JP, Sáfián S, Saldaña-Vázquez RA, Sam K, Samnegård U, Santana J, Santos X, Savage J, Schellhorn NA, Schilthuizen M, Schmiedel U, Schmitt CB, Schon NL, Schüepp C, Schumann K, Schweiger O, Scott DM, Scott KA, Sedlock JL, Seefeldt SS, Shahabuddin G, Shannon G, Sheil D, Sheldon FH, Shochat E, Siebert SJ, Silva FAB, Simonetti JA, Slade EM, Smith J, Smith-Pardo AH, Sodhi NS, Somarriba EJ, Sosa RA, Soto Quiroga G, St-Laurent M-H, Starzomski BM, Stefanescu C, Steffan-Dewenter I, Stouffer PC, Stout JC, Strauch AM, Struebig MJ, Su Z, Suarez-Rubio M, Sugiura S, Summerville KS, Sung Y-H, Sutrisno H, Svenning J-C, Teder T, Threlfall CG, Tiitsaar A, Todd JH, Tonietto RK, Torre I, Tóthmérész B, Tscharntke T, Turner EC, Tylianakis JM, Uehara-Prado M, Urbina-Cardona N, Vallan D, Vanbergen AJ, Vasconcelos HL, Vassilev K, Verboven HAF, Verdasca MJ, Verdú JR, Vergara CH, Vergara PM, Verhulst J, Virgilio M, Vu LV, Waite EM, Walker TR, Wang H-F, Wang Y, Watling JI, Weller B, Wells K, Westphal C, Wiafe ED, Williams CD, Willig MR, Woinarski JCZ, Wolf JHD, Wolters V, Woodcock BA, Wu J, Wunderle JM, Yamaura Y, Yoshikura S, Yu DW, Zaitsev AS, Zeidler J, Zou F, Collen B, Ewers RM, Mace GM, Purves DW, Scharlemann JPW, Purvis A (2017) The database of the {PREDICTS} ({Projecting} {Responses} of {Ecological} {Diversity} {In} {Changing} {Terrestrial} {Systems}) project. Ecology and Evolution 7: 145-188.
  • Junker RR, Kuppler J, Amo L, Blande JD, Borges RM, van Dam NM, Dicke M, Dötterl S, Ehlers BK, Etl F, Gershenzon J, Glinwood R, Gols R, Groot AT, Heil M, Hoffmeister M, Holopainen JK, Jarau S, John L, Kessler A, Knudsen JT, Kost C, Larue-Kontic A-AC, Leonhardt SD, Lucas-Barbosa D, Majetic CJ, Menzel F, Parachnowitsch AL, Pasquet RS, Poelman EH, Raguso RA, Ruther J, Schiestl FP, Schmitt T, Tholl D, Unsicker SB, Verhulst N, Visser ME, Weldegergis BT, Köllner TG (2017) Covariation and phenotypic integration in chemical communication displays: biosynthetic constraints and eco-evolutionary implications. New Phytologist 220: 739-749.
  • Menzel F, Schmitt T, Blaimer BB (2017) The evolution of a complex trait: cuticular hydrocarbons in ants evolve independent from phylogenetic constraints. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 30: 1372-1385.
  • Menzel F, Blaimer BB, Schmitt T (2017) How do cuticular hydrocarbons evolve? {Physiological} constraints and climatic and biotic selection pressures act on a complex functional trait. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 284: 20161727.
  • Peters RS, Krogmann L, Mayer C, Donath A, Gunkel S, Meusemann K, Kozlov A, Podsiadlowski L, Petersen M, Lanfear R, Diez PA, Heraty J, Kjer KM, Klopfstein S, Meier R, Polidori C, Schmitt T, Liu S, Zhou X, Wappler T, Rust J, Misof B, Niehuis O (2017) Evolutionary {History} of the {Hymenoptera}. Current Biology 27: 1013-1018.
  • Wurdack M, Polidori C, Keller A, Feldhaar H, Schmitt T (2017) Release from prey preservation behavior via prey switch allowed diversification of cuticular hydrocarbon profiles in digger wasps: {DIVERSIFICATION} {OF} {DIGGER} {WASP} {CUTICULAR} {PROFILES}. Evolution 71: 2562-2571.
  • Wurmitzer C, Blüthgen N, Krell F-T, Maldonado B, Ocampo F, Müller JK, Schmitt T (2017) Attraction of dung beetles to herbivore dung and synthetic compounds in a comparative field study. Chemoecology 27: 75-84.


Flaig I. C., Aguilar I., Schmitt T. & Jarau S. (2016) An unusual recruitment strategy in a mass‐recruiting stingless bee, Partamona orizabaensisJournal of Comparative Physiology A 202: 679-690.

Diao W., Mousset M., Horsburgh G. J., Vermeulen C. J., Johannes F., van de Zande L., Ritchie M. G., Schmitt T. & Beukeboom L. W. (2016) Quantitative trait locus analysis of mating behavior and male sex pheromones in Nasonia wasps. G3 - Genes, Genomics, Genetics 6: 1549-1562.

Leonhardt S. D., Menzel F., Nehring V. & Schmitt T. (2016) Ecology and evolution of communication in social insects (invited review). Cell 164: 1277-1287.
Jansen J., Pokorny T. & Schmitt T. (2016): Disentangling the effect of insemination and ovary development on the cuticular hydrocarbon profile in the bumblebee Bombus terrestris (Hymenoptera: Apidae). Apidologie 47: 101-113.


Wurdack M., Herbertz S., Dowling D., Kroiss J., Strohm E., Baur H., Niehuis O. & Schmitt T. (2015) Striking cuticular hydrocarbon dimorphism in the mason wasp Odynerus spinipes and its possible evolutionary cause (Hymenoptera: Chrysididae, Vespidae). Proceedings of the Royal Sociecty B, London 282: 20151777.

Strube-Bloss M. F., Brown A., Spaethe J., Schmitt T. & Rössler W. (2015) Extracting the behaviorally relevant stimulus: Unique neural representation of farnesol, a component of the recruitment pheromone of Bombus terrestris. PLoS ONE 10: e0137413. OPEN ACCESS.

Buellesbach J. & Schmitt T. (2015): The role of cuticular hydrocarbon-based chemical communication in prezygotic reproductive isolation. In Animal Communication and Cognition: Principles, Evolution and Development, ed. Wagner T. Nova Publishers, Hauppauge NY, pp. 107-119.


Leonhardt S. D., Baumann A.-M., Wallace H. M., Brooks P. & Schmitt T. (2014) The chemistry of an unusual seed dispersal mutualism: bees use a complex set of olfactory cues to find their partner. Animal Behaviour 98: 41-51.

Büllesbach J., Greim C., Raychoudhury R. & Schmitt T. (2014) Asymmetric assortative mating behaviour reflects incomplete prezygotic isolation in the Nasonia species complex. Ethology 120: 834-843.

Jennings J. H., Etges W. J., Schmitt T. & Hoikkala A. (2014) Cuticular hydrocarbons of Drosophila montana: Geographic variation, sexual dimorphism and potential roles as pheromones. Journal of Insect Physiology 61: 16–24.

Menzel F., Orivel J., Kaltenpoth M. & Schmitt T. (2014) What makes you a potential partner? Insights from convergently evolved ant–ant symbioses. Chemoecology 24: 105-119.


Giesbers M. C. W. G., Gerritsma S., Buellesbach J., Diao W., Pannebaker B. A., van de Zande L., Schmitt T. & Beukeboom L. W. (2013): Prezygotic isolation in the parasitoid wasp genus Nasonia. In: Speciation: Natural Processes, Genetics and Biodiversity, ed. Michalak P.  Nova Publishers, Hauppauge NY, pp. 165-195.

Rödel M.-O., Brede C., Hirschfeld M., Schmitt T., Favreau P., Stöcklin R., Wunder C. & Mebs D. (2013) Chemical camouflage – a frog’s strategy to co-exist with aggressive ants. PLOS One 8(12):e81950.

Buellesbach J. M., Gadau J., Beukeboom L. W., Echinger F., Raychoudhury R., Werren J. H. & Schmitt T. (2013) Cuticular hydrocarbon divergence in the jewel wasp Nasonia: Evolutionary shifts in chemical communication channel? Journal of Evolutionary Biology 26: 2467-2478.

Menzel F., Blüthgen N., Tolasch T., Conrad J., Beifuß U., Beuerle T. & Schmitt T. (2013) Crematoenones – a novel substance class exhibited by ants functions as appeasement signal. Frontiers in Zoology 10:32.

Leonhardt S. D., Rasmussen C. & Schmitt T. (2013) Genes vs. environment: Geography and phylogenetic relationships shape the chemical profiles of stingless bees on a global scale. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, London 280:1762.

Niehaus O., Büllesbach J., Gibson, J. D., Pothmann D., Hanner C., Mutti N. S., Judson A. K., Gadau J., Ruther J. & Schmitt T. (2013) Behavioural and genetic analyses on Nasonia shed light on the evolution of sex pheromones. Nature 494: 345-348.


Schlechter J., Schmitt T. & Peschke K. (2012) Learning individual signatures: rove beetle males discriminate unreceptive females by cuticular hydrocarbon patterns. Animal Behaviour 84: 369-376.

Menzel F. & Schmitt T. (2012) First evidence for an interspecific selection pressure on chemical recognition cues. Evolution 66: 896-904.

Butlin R., Debelle A., Kerth C, Snook R. R., Beukeboom L. W., Castillo Cajas R. F., Diao W., Maan M. M., Paolucci S., Weissing F. J., van de Zande L., Hoikkala A., Geuverink E., Jennings J., Kankare, M., Knott K. E., Tyukmaeva V. I., Zoumadakis C., Ritchie M. G., Barker D., Immonen E., Noor M., Macias C., Schmitt T. & Schilthuizen M. (2012) What do we need to know about speciation? Trends in Ecology and Evolution 27: 27-39.


Leonhardt S.D., Form S., Blüthgen N., Schmitt T. & Feldhaar H. (2011) Genetic relatedness and chemical profiles in an unusually peaceful eusocial bee. Journal of Chemical Ecology 37: 1117-1126.

Schlechter J., Schmitt T. & Peschke K. (2011) A contact antiaphrodisiac pheromone supplied by the spermatophore in the rove beetle Aleochara curtula: mode of transfer and evolutionary significance. Naturwissenschaften 98: 855-862.

Haberer W., Schmitt T., Schreier P. & Müller J.K. (2011) Intended and unintended receivers of the male pheromones of the burying beetles Nicrophorus humator and Nicrophorus vespilloidesEntomologia Experimentalis et Applicata 140: 122-126.

Leonhardt S., Schmitt T. & Blüthgen N. (2011) Tree resin composition, collection behaviour and selective filters shape chemical profiles of tropical bees (Apidae: Meliponini). PLoS One 6(8), e23445.

Leonhardt, S.D., Wallace, H.M. & Schmitt T. (2011) The cuticular profiles of Australian stingless bees are shaped by resin of the euclypt tree Corymbia torelliana. Austral Ecology 36: 537-543.

Niehuis O., Büllesbach J., Judson A.K., Schmitt T. & Gadau J. (2011) Genetics of cuticular hydrocarbons in F2 hybrid males of Nasonia giraulti and Nasonia vitripennisHeredity 107: 61-70.

Steiger S., Schmitt T. & Schaefer H. M. (2011) The dynamic evolution of chemical information transfer. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, London 278: 970-979.

Leonhardt S., Blüthgen N. & Schmitt T. (2011) Chemical profiles of body surfaces and nests from six Bornean stingless bee species. Journal of Chemical Ecology 37: 98-104.


Menzel F., Woywod M., Blüthgen N. & Schmitt T. (2010) Behavioural and chemical mechanisms behind a Mediterranean ant-ant association. Ecological Entomology 35: 711-720.

Drescher J., Blüthgen N., Schmitt T., Bühler J. & Feldhaar H. (2010) Societies drifting apart? Behavioral, genetic and chemical differentiation between supercolonies in the yellow crazy ant Anaplolepis gracilipesPlosOne 5: e13581.

Leonhardt S., Zeilhofer S., Blüthgen N. & Schmitt T. (2010) Singless bees use terpenes as olfactory cues to find resin sources. Chemical Senses 35: 593-601.

Leonhardt S., Jung L.-M., Schmitt T. & Blüthgen N. (2010) Terpenoids tame aggressors: role of chemicals in stingless bee communal nesting. Behavioral Ecology & Sociobiology 64: 1415-1523.

Menzel F., Pokorny T., Blüthgen N. & Schmitt T. (2010) Trail-sharing among tropical ants: interspecific use of trail pheromones? Ecological Entomology 35: 495-503.

Kaltenpoth M., Schmitt T., Polidori C., Koedam D. & Strohm E. (2010) Symbiotic streptomycetes in the antennae of South American Trachypus digger wasps (Hymenoptera, Carbronidae). Physiological Entomology 35: 196-200.

Raychoudhury R., Desjardins C. A., Buellesbach J., Loehlin D. W., Grillenberger B. K., Beukeboom L., Schmitt T. & Werren J. H. (2010) Behavioural and genetic characteristics of a new species of NasoniaHeredity 104: 278-288.

The Nasonia Genome Working Group (2010) Functional and evolutionary insights from the genomes of three Nasonia species. Science327: 343-348.


Kaltenpoth M., Schmitt T. & Strohm E. (2009) Hydrocarbons of the antennal gland secretion of female European beewolves, Philanthus triangulum (Hymenoptera: Crabronidae). Chemoecology 19: 219-225.

Menzel F., Schmitt T. & Blüthgen N. (2009) Interspecific nestmate recognition in two parabiotic ant species: acquired recognition cues and low inter-colony discrimination. Insectes Sociaux 56: 251-260.

Leonhardt S., Blüthgen N. & Schmitt T. (2009) Smelling like resin: terpenoids account for species-specific cuticular profiles in Southeast-Asian stingless bees. Insectes Sociaux 56: 157-170.

Kroiss J., Schmitt T. & Strohm E. (2009) Low level of cuticular hydrocarbons in a parasitoid of a solitary digger wasp and its potential for concealment. Entomological Science 12: 9-16.

Geiselhardt S., Schmitt T. & Peschke K. (2009) Chemical composition and pheromonal function of the defensive secretions in the subtribe Stizopina (Coleoptera, Tenebrionidae, Opatrini). Chemoecology 19: 1-6.


Menzel F., Blüthgen N. & Schmitt T. (2008) Tropical parabiotic ants: Highly unusual cuticular substances and low interspecific discrimination. Frontiers in Zoology 5:16.

Strohm E., Herzner G., Kaltenpoth, M., Boland W., Schreier P., Geiselhardt S., Peschke K. & Schmitt T. (2008) The chemistry of the postpharyngeal gland of female European Beewolves. Journal of Chemical Ecology 34: 575-583.

Oettler J., Schmitt T., Herzner G. & Heinze J. (2008) Chemical profiles of mated and virgin queens, egg-laying intermorphs and workers of the ant Crematogaster smithiiJournal of Insect Physiology 54: 672-679.

Haberer W., Schmitt T., Peschke K., Schreier P. & Müller J. K. (2008) Ethyl 4-methyl heptanoate: a male-produced pheromone of Nicrophorus vespilloidesJournal of Chemical Ecology 34: 94-98.

Strohm E., Kroiss J., Herzner G., Laurien-Kehnen C., Boland W., Schreier P. & Schmitt T. (2008): A cuckoo in wolves’ clothing? Chemical mimicry in a specialized cuckoo wasp of the European beewolf (Hymenoptera, Chrysididae and Crabronidae). Frontiers in Zoology 5: 2.


Herzner G., Schmitt T., Peschke K., Hilpert A. & Strohm E. (2007) Food wrapping with the postpharyngeal gland secretion by females of the European beewolf Philanthus triangulumJournal of Chemical Ecology 33: 849-859.

Schmitt T., Herzner G., Weckerle B., Schreier P. & Strohm E. (2007) Volatiles of foraging honeybees Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae) and their potential role as semiochemicals. Apidologie 38: 164-170.


Kroiss J., Schmitt T., Schreier P., Strohm E. & Herzner G. (2006) A selfish function of a social gland? A postpharyngeal gland functions as sex pheromone reservoir in males of a solitary wasp. Journal of Chemical Ecology 32: 2763-2776.

Brandt M., Heinze J., Schmitt T. & Foitzik, S. (2006) Convergent evolution of the Dufour’s gland secretion as a propaganda substance in the slave-making ant genera Protomognathus and HarpagoxenusInsectes Sociaux 53: 291-299.

Herzner G., Schmitt T., Schreier P. & Strohm E. (2006) Brothers smell similar: Variation in the sex pheromone of male European Beewolves and its implications for inbreeding avoidance. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 89: 433-442.


Böll S., Schmitt T., Burschka C., Schreier P., Schwappach P. & Herrmann J. V. (2005): Calciumtartrate crystals in the midgut of the grape leafhopper. Journal of Chemical Ecology 31: 2847-2856.

Herzner G., Schmitt T., Linsenmair K. E. & Strohm E. (2005) Prey recognition by females of the European beewolf and its potential for a sensory trap. Animal Behaviour 70: 1411-1418.

Brandt M., Heinze J., Schmitt T. & Foitzik, S. (2005) A chemical level in the coevolutionary arms race between an ant social parasite and its hosts. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 18: 576-586.


Schmitt T., Krell F.-T. & Linsenmair K. E. (2004) Quinone mixture as attractant for necrophagous dung beetles on dead millipedes. Journal of Chemical Ecology 30: 731-740.

Endler A., Liebig J., Schmitt T., Parker J., Jones G., Schreier P. & Hölldobler B. (2004) Surface hydrocarbons of queen eggs regulate worker reproduction in a social insect. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science of the USA 101: 2945-2950.


Herzner G., Schmitt T., Linsenmair K. E. & Strohm E. (2003) Flagellar sensilla in male and female European beewolves, Philanthus triangulum F. (Hymenoptera: Sphecidae). Entomologica Fennica 14: 237–247.

Schmitt T., Strohm E., Herzner G., Bicchi C., Krammer G., Heckel F. & Schreier P. (2003) (S)-2,3-Dihydrofarnesoic acid, a new component in cephalic glands of male European beewolves Philanthus triangulumJournal of Chemical Ecology 29: 2469-2479.


Schmitt T. & Lehman N. (1999) Non-unity molecular heritability demonstrated by continuous evolution in vitro. Chemistry & Biology 6: 857-869.

Krell F.-T., Schmitt T. & Linsenmair K. E. (1999) The rhinoceros beetle Cyphonistes tuberculifrons Quedenfeldt 1884 attracted by quinones (Coleoptera Scarabaeidae Dynastinae): primary olfactory attraction of a saprophagous beetle by its source of food? Tropical Zoology 12: 297-308.


Krell F.-T. Schmitt T. & Linsenmair K. E. (1997): Diplopod defensive secretions as attractants for necrophagous scarab beetles (Diplopoda; Insecta, Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Entomologica Scandinavica Supplement 51: 281-285.