Jonas Eberle

Jonas Eberle

Research interest

My research mainly focuses on molecular phylogenetics, phylogeography, diversification, and taxonomy of beetles. Current projects investigate the biodiversity of scarabs in Sri Lanka in the light of their evolutionary dynamics and species turnover in different habitats and connectivity of chafer populations that live in forest remnants in South Africa. Since species are the fundamental units of life, I am also significantly concerned with integrative species demarcation. In particular, I combine molecular with morphological data, such as those obtained with geometric morphometrics.  

Curriculum vitae:

Employment history

  • 02/2018- Sept. 2019: Postdoc, Zoological Research Museum A. Koenig, Bonn, Section Coleoptera. DFG Priority Program “TaxonOmics”; development of universal nuclear markers for integrative species delimitation (Target Enrichment, Next Generation Sequencing); four weeks field work in Sri Lanka.  
  • 03/2016- 11/2017: Scientific Employee / Postdoc, Zoological Research Museum A.Koenig, Bonn, Section Arachnida (DFG Project). Phylogenetic and diversification studies on pholcid spiders.  
  • 04/2017 Scientific Employee, German Barcode of Life (GBOL) Project. Correcting & harmonizing the GBOL taxon names database with the red list Germany (Dytiscidae & Carabidae).  
  • 02/2012- 12/2015 Scientific Employee, Zoological Research Museum A. Koenig, Bonn, Section Coleoptera (DFG Project). Molecular and morphological studies on the evolution of scarabs; including a four weeks field trip to South Africa.  
  • 04/2010- 02/2012 Scientific Volunteer, State Museum of Natural History, Karlsruhe, Section Entomology. Collection management, collection-based research, exhibition planning, public relations; three weeks field work in Greece.  
  • 01- 03/2010 Volunteer, Zoological State Collections, Munich. Diverse activities in the Coleoptera collection. 


  • 02/2012- 09/2017 Doctorate, Rhenish Fiedrich—Wilhelms-University, Bonn. Title: “Reconciling molecular with biological and morphological data towards an integrative analysis of the evolutionary biology of chafers.” Degree 1.0 (magna cum laude).  
  • 2004- 2009 Diploma, Technical University, Munich. Major: Zoology Minors: Entomology & Limnology Diploma thesis: “Revision and Cladistic Analysis of the Indo—Australian Checkered Beetle Genus X enorthrius Gorham, 1892 (Coleoptera: Cleridae: Clerinae).” Degree: 1.1.




Eberle J, Ahrens D, Mayer C, Niehuis O, Misof B (2020) A Plea for Standardized Nuclear Markers in Metazoan DNA Taxonomy. Trends in Ecology & Evolution 35: 336-345.

Ranasinghe S, Eberle J, Benjamin SR, Ahrens D (2020) New Species of Sericini from Sri Lanka (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae. European Journal of Taxonomy 621.

Sabatinelli G, Eberle J, Fabrizi S, Ahrens D (2020) A molecular phylogeny of Glaphyridae (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea): evolution of pollination and association with ‘Poppy guild’ flowers. Systematic Entomology doi:10.1111/syen.12429


Ahrens D, Fabrizi S, Nikolaev K, Knechtges L, Eberle J (2019) On the identity of some taxa of Sericinae described by C. P. Thunberg and L. Gyllenhal (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae). Bonn Zoological Bulletin 68(1): 21-29.

Dalstein V, Eberle J, Fabrizi S, Etzbauer C, Ahrens D (2019) COI-based species delimitation in Indochinese Tetraserica chafers reveal hybridisation despite strong divergence in male copulation organs. Organisms Diversity & Evolution 19: 277-286.

Eberle J, Bazzato E, Fabrizi S, Rossini M, Colomba M, Cillo D, Uliana M, Sparacio I, Sabatinelli G, Warnock RCM, Carpaneto G, Ahrens D (2019) Sex-Biased Dispersal Obscures Species Boundaries in Integrative Species Delimitation Approaches. Systematic Biology 68: 441‐459. doi:10.1093/sysbio/syy072

Eberle J, Sabatinelli G, Cillo D, Bazzato E, Šípek P, Sehnal R, Bezděk A, Král D, Ahrens D (2019) A molecular phylogeny of Melolonthinae chafer beetles revisits the polyphyly of Tanyproctini (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae). Zoologica Scripta 48: 349-358.

Fabrizi S, Eberle J, Ahrens D (2019) Unexpected diversity of Hyboserica chafers in South African forest remains: phylogenetic analysis, a new genus and 32 new species (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Melolonthinae). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society186: 950–982.

Huber BA, Caspar K, Eberle J (2019) New species reveal unexpected interspecific microhabitat diversity in the genus Uthina Simon, 1893 (Araneae: Pholcidae). Invertebrate Systematics 33:181-207. 

Li W, Łączyński P, Escalona HE, Eberle J, Hu, L, Chen X, Huang W, Chen B, Ahrens D, Ślipiński A, Tomaszewska W, Wang X (2019) Combined molecular and morphological data provide insights into the evolution and classification of Chilocorini ladybirds (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Systematic Entomology 45: 447–463. doi:10.1111/syen.12409

Neita Moreno JC, Agrain FA, Eberle J, Ahrens D, Pereyra V (2019) On the phylogenetic position and systematics of extant and fossil Aclopinae (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Systematic Entomology 44:709-727.


Eberle J, Bazzato E, Fabrizi S, Rossini M, Colomba M, Cillo D, Uliana M, Sparacio I, Sabatinelli G, Warnock RCM, Carpaneto G, Ahrens D (2018) Sex-Biased dispersal obscures species boundaries in integrative species delimitation approaches. Systematic Biology 68:321–353.

Eberle J, Dimitrov D, Valdez-Mondragón A, Huber BA (2018) Microhabitat change drives diversification in pholcid spiders. BMC Evolutionary Biology 18:141.

Huber BA, Eberle J, Dimitrov D (2018) The phylogeny of pholcid spiders: a critical evaluation of relationships suggested by molecular data (Araneae, Pholcidae). ZooKeys 789:51-101.


Eberle J, Beckett M, Özgül-Siemund A, Frings J, Fabrizi S, Ahrens D (2017) Afromontane forests hide 19 new species of ancient Pleophylla chafers (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae): phylogeny and taxonomic revision. Zoological Journal of Linnean Society 180:321-353.

Eberle J, Rödder D, Beckett M, Ahrens D (2017) Landscape genetics indicate recently increased habitat fragmentation in African forest-associated chafers. Global Change Biology 23:1988–2004.

Rulik B, Eberle J, Geiger MF, Ahrens D (2017) Using taxonomic consistency for producing high quality barcodes. Barcode Bulletin 8:1878-1887.

Rulik B, Eberle J, von der Mark L, Thormann J, Jung M, Köhler F, Apfel W, Weigel A, Kopetz A, Köhler J, Fritzlar F, Hartmann M, Hadulla K, Schmidt J, Hörren T, Krebs D, Theves F, Eulitz U, Skale A, Rohwedder D, Kleeberg A, Astrin JJ, Geiger MF, Wägele WJ, Grobe P, Ahrens D (2017) Using taxonomic consistency with semi-automated data pre-processing for high quality DNA barcodes. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 8:1878-1887., German Barcode of Life


Ahrens D, Fujisawa T, Krammer HJ, Eberle J, Fabrizi S, Vogler AP (2016) Rarity and incomplete sampling in DNA-based species delimitation. Systematic Biology 65:478-494.

Eberle J, Fabrizi S, Lago P, Ahrens D (2016) A historical biogeography of megadiverse Sericini – another story “out of Africa”? Cladistics 33:183-197.

Eberle J, Warnock RCM, Ahrens D (2016) Bayesian species delimitation in Pleophylla chafers (Coleoptera) – the importance of prior choice and morphology. BMC Evolutionary Biology 16:94.

Šípek P, Fabrizi S, Eberle J, Ahrens D (2016) A molecular phylogeny of rose chafers (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Cetoniinae) reveals a complex and concerted morphological evolution related to their flight mode. Molecular Phylogenentics and Evolution 101:163–175.


Eberle J, Walbaum W, Fabrizi S, Ahrens D (2015): Asymmetry in genitalia does not increase the rate of their evolution. Molecular Phylogenentics and Evolution 93:180–187.

Liu WG, Bai M, Eberle J, Yang XK, Ahrens D (2015) A phylogeny of Chinese Sericini using mitochondrial and ribosomal RNA genes (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Organisms, Diversity and Evolution 15:343–350.


Eberle J, Myburgh R, Ahrens D (2014) The evolution of morphospace in phytophagous scarab chafers: no competition - no divergence?. Plos One 9:e98536.


Eberle J, Myburgh R, Ahrens D (2013) The evolution of morphospace in herbivorous scarab chafers: no competition - no divergence?. Talk Abstract, DGAAE Tagung Goettingen.

Oezgul-Siemund A, Eberle J, Ahrens D (2013) Morphometric analysis of female genitalia of Pleophylla beetles.


Eberle J, Tänzler R, Riedel A (2012) Revision and phylogenetic analysis of the Papuan weevil genus Thyestetha Pascoe (Coleoptera, Curculionidae, Cryptorhynchinae). Zootaxa 3355:1–28.

Shrestha J, Eberle J, Ahrens D (2012) Further data on the distribution of Himalayan Sericini from the collection of Naturel History Museum Erfurt (Insecta: Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) with description of a new Xenoserica from West-Nepal. Vernate 31:379-386.


Gerstmeier R, Eberle J (2011) Definition and revision of the Orthrius-group of genera (Coleoptera, Cleridae, Clerinae). Zookeys 92:35–60.


Gerstmeier R, and Eberle J (2010) Revision of the Indo-Australian checkered beetle genus Xenorthrius Gorham, 1892 (Coleoptera: Cleridae, Clerinae). Zootaxa 2584:1–121.


Eberle J (2009) Revision and cladistic analysis of the Indo-Australian checkered beetle genus Xenorthrius Gorham, 1892 (Coleoptera:Cleridae:Clerinae). Diploma Thesis, Technische Universität München.

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