The history of marine research on Helgoland and Sylt

Helgoland has one of the longest marine biological histories in Europe, if not the world. Since the mid 19th century Helgoland has attracted marine scientists which used this rocky outpost in the German Bight, that is Helgoland, for their studies (Werner 1993). Ehrenberg for instance discovered that the dinoflagellate Noctiluca scintillans (Macartney) Kofoid & Swezy, 1921  one of the most important causative species for bioluminescence in the North Sea, and the famous physiologist Johannes Müller elucidated the life cycles of starfish and other echinoderms, while his student Ernst Haeckel came to Helgoland to investigate protozoa such as Radiolaria, eventually compiling several monographs with outstanding biological artwork. 

In 1892 the Biologische Anstalt Helgoland (BAH) was officially opened and in 2017 we therefore celebrate the 125th anniversary of the foundation of the BAH, which is affectionately known as 'the Bio'. Sylt and Helgoland share a joint history in that  since, in 1924, a marine station the 'Austernstation List' was also founded on Sylt. This later became part of the Biologische Anstalt Helgoland and is now, as the Waddensea Station Sylt, also firmly integrated into the Alfred Wegener Institute.

Event details: An official celebration event will be followed by open days at the Biologische Anstalt on Helgoland and the Waddensea Station Sylt in which staff of both stations showcase their activities.