Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research
Royal Netherlands
Institute for Sea Research
Phone number
+31 (0)222 369 484
Independent Contractor

Eelke Folmer

Independent Contractor


  • Benthic Ecology
  • Shorebirds
  • Spatial ecology
  • Self-organization
  • Complex systems

Research interests

I am interested in the processes underlying abundance, distribution, diversity and dynamics of organisms. I believe that there is ample potential for the application of ecological theory and technology to support sustainable development and food production. I enjoy working on real-world problems using fundamental principles. I combine mathematical, statistical, computational, and eco-informatic approaches. I collaborate with scientists and technicians from different disciplines, including oceanographers, geomorphologists, economists and engineers.

I also enjoy working across disciplinary boundaries using systems analysis approaches to obtain broad understanding of issues of global environmental and societal concern. My hope is that such understanding will be useful to our planet and society.







Folmer, E.O., C.J.M. Philippart, M. van Katwijk, T. Dolch, U. Gräwe, J. van Beusekom. (2016)
Consensus Forecasting of Intertidal Seagrass Habitat in the Wadden Sea. Journal of Applied
Ecology 53, 1800-1813.

Folmer, E.O., J. Drent, K. Troost, H. Büttger, N. Dankers, J. Jansen, M. van Stralen, G. Millat, M.
Herlyn, C.J.M. Philippart. (2014) Large-scale spatial dynamics of intertidal mussel (Mytilus edulis
) bed coverage in the German and Dutch Wadden Sea. Ecosystems, 17, 550-566.

Folmer, E.O., Geest, M. van der, Jansen, E., Olff, H., Anderson, T.M., Piersma, T. & Gils, J.A. van.
(2012) Seagrass–sediment feedback: an exploration using a non-recursive structural equation
model. Ecosystems, 15, 1380–1393.

Folmer, E.O., Olff, H. & Piersma, T. (2012) The spatial distribution of flocking foragers: disentan-
gling the effects of food availability, interference and conspecific attraction by means of spatial
autoregressive modeling. Oikos, 121, 551–561.

Complete lists:


Professional education

2012 PhD "Self-organization on mudflats" Animal Ecology Group, University of Groningen, The Netherlands. Advisors Prof. Dr. T. Piersma and Prof. Dr. H. Olff

2003 MSc Biology, University of Groningen



Awards and Prized





Linked news

Thursday 01 February 2018
Wadden Sea World Heritage launched Wadden Sea Quality Status Report 2017
The new Wadden Sea Quality Status Report (QSR) is now available. Over the course of two years, more than 100 scientists have reviewed and evaluated the current ecological status of the entire Wadden Sea based on a trilateral monitoring programme…

NIOZ publications

  • 2017
    Dolch, T.; Folmer, E.O.; Frederiksen, M.S.; Herlyn, M.; van Katwijk, M.M.; Kolbe, K.; Krause-Jensen, D.; Schmedes, P.; Westerbeek, E.P. (2017). Seagrass. Wadden Sea Working Group Report. Common Wadden Sea Secretariat: Wilhelmshaven, Germany.
    Folmer, E.; Büttger, H.; Herlyn, M.; Markert, A.; Millat, G.; Troost, K.; Wehrmann, A. (2017). Beds of blue mussels and Pacific oysters, in: Kloepper, S. et al. Wadden Sea Quality Status Report 2017.
    Folmer, E.; Dekinga, A.; Holthuijsen, S.; Van der Meer, J.; Mosk, D.; Piersma, T.; van der Veer, H. (2017). Species Distribution Models of Intertidal Benthos : Tools for Assessing the Impact of Physical and Morphological Drivers on Benthos and Birds in the Wadden Sea. NIOZ-rapport, 2017(3). NIOZ: Texel. 114 pp.
  • 2016
    Bijleveld, A.I.; Folmer, E. (2016). Wat verklaart de grootschalige ecologische ontwikkelingen in de Waddenzee? : Implicaties voor monitoring, onderzoek en beleid, in: Visies op de Wadden : Zes essays ten behoeve van de Beleidsverkenning ToekomstigeRol en Ambitie van het Rijk voor het Waddengebied.
    Folmer, E.; Van der Meer, J. (2016). Sample size requirements for testing the effectiveness of pulse gear for reducing discards in shrimp fisheries - a power analysis. NIOZ-rapport, 2016(2). NIOZ: Texel. 33 pp.
    Folmer, E.O.; van Beusekom, J.E.E.; Dolch, T; Gräwe, U.; van Katwijk, M.M.; Kolbe, K.; Philippart, C.J.M. (2016). Consensus forecasting of intertidal seagrass habitat in the Wadden Sea. J. Appl. Ecol. 53: 1800–1813.
    Kromkamp, J.C.; Folmer, E.; Philippart, C.J.M. (2016). Opzet rekeninstrumentarium voor de berekening van primaire productie van fytoplankton en microfytobenthos in het Eems-Dollard estuarium. [S.n.]: [s.l.].
  • 2015
    van Gils, J.A.; van der Geest, M.; De Meulenaer, B.; Gillis, H.; Piersma, T.; Folmer, E.O. (2015). Moving on with foraging theory: incorporating movement decisions into the functional response of a gregarious shorebird. J. Anim. Ecol. 84(2): 554–564.
  • 2014
    Folmer, E.O.; Drent, J.; Troost, K.; Büttger, H.; Dankers, N.; Jansen, J.; van Stralen, M.; Millat, G.; Herlyn, M.; Philippart, C.J.M. (2014). Large-Scale Spatial Dynamics of Intertidal Mussel (Mytilus edulis L.) Bed Coverage in the German and Dutch Wadden Sea. Ecosystems 17(3): 550-566.
    Veen, T.; Hjernquist, M.B.; Van Wilgenburg, S.L.; Hobson, K.A.; Folmer, E.; Font, L.; Klaassen, M. (2014). Identifying the African Wintering Grounds of Hybrid Flycatchers Using a Multi-Isotope (d2H, d13C, d15N) Assignment Approach. PLoS One 9(5): e98075.
  • 2012
    Bijleveld, A.I.; Folmer, E.O.; Piersma, T. (2012). Experimental evidence for cryptic interference among socially foraging shorebirds. Behav. Ecol. 23(4): 806-814.
    Folmer, E.O.; Olff, H.; Piersma, T. (2012). The spatial distribution of flocking foragers: disentangling the effects of food availability, interference and conspecific attraction by means of spatial autoregressive modeling. Oikos (Kbh.) 121(4): 551-561.
    Folmer, E.O.; Piersma, T. (2012). The contributions of resource availability and social forces to foraging distributions: a spatial lag modelling approach. Anim. Behav. 84(6): 1371-1380.
    Folmer, E.O.; van der Geest, M.; Jansen, E.; Olff, H.; Anderson, T.M.; Piersma, T.; van Gils, J.A. (2012). Seagrass-Sediment Feedback: An Exploration Using a Non-recursive Structural Equation Model. Ecosystems 15(8): 1380-1393.

Linked projects

WaLTER_Wadden Sea Long-term Ecosystem Research
Ingrid de Raad
Project duration
1 Jan 2011 - 28 Feb 2017
Growth potential of Cockles in the Ems estuary
Katja Philippart
Provicie Groningen
Project duration
1 Jun 2016 - 31 Oct 2016