From the Soldier Fly to the High Performance Cow - the Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology opens its gates

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Invitation to the big "Open Day" on 21 September

The researchers and staff of the Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology (FBN) and the Landesforschungsanstalt für Landwirtschaft und Fischerei MV (LFA) invite you to a big "Open Day" for the whole family on Saturday, 21st September 2019. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the scientists will be on hand at numerous activity stations on the premises of the Research Institute to answer questions on current issues of food production and animal welfare and provide an exciting insight into their work. Admission and parking on site are free. Three years ago, more than 3,000 visitors of all ages flocked to Dummerstorf for the open day. (Flyer)

Do soldier flies save the climate? How does our inner clock tick? How clever are goats, pigs and chickens and why are piglets castrated after all? There are many questions about our food, which we find comfortably and in a large selection in the supermarket. At the same time, conflicts are escalating as the world population grows and resources become scarcer. This is exactly what the experts at FBN and LFA are researching. "On the Open Day, we would like to highlight the great challenges in the animal-derived food supply of the future and answer the questions of the visitors," said FBN director Prof. Klaus Wimmers. "We are looking forward to many guests who are interested in our work for appropriate animal husbandry and a careful handling of our nature and environment.

Guided tours and lectures, laboratories and experiments

Open day means science and research up close and personal - from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. guided tours or discovery tours on your own as well as a look behind the scenes are possible. It is absolutely welcome to try out and actively participate in experiments. All visitors will receive a flyer with a map for better orientation. A total of 28 stations have been set up on the site, where present-day animal research can be experienced up close. Visitors can visit the large animal operating room, the experimental facilities for pigs and cattle, the various laboratories, the famous Dummerstorfer mice and many animal offspring. Those who like it cosy can take a horse-drawn carriage to the pig experimental facility about one kilometre away.

In addition, FBN will present its latest farmed animals for the first time. It is about the research of the up to two centimeters tall black soldier fly and its protein-rich larvae as an alternative high-quality protein source for animal feed. Only since July has a colony of FBN’s smallest "barn animals" buzzed through the FBN in the service of science. On Open Day, the scientists will report on their new flying protégés and give an insight into the future of soldier flies as "climate protectors".

From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., entertaining lectures on the history of milking, the discovery of the inner clock, meat quality and the significance of sugars for the immune system will be offered in the auditorium of the conference centre.

Entertainment: Something for everyone

For the youngest, a child-friendly programme with a knowledge quiz and sporting highlights was set up together with the Dummerstorf fire brigade. The most beautiful creations of the day will be awarded in the animal kneading competition at 2.30 pm.

Of course, the popular station for homemade ice cream should not be missing either. 

In addition, there are several opportunities for all visitors to relax on the institute campus with good music, recharge their batteries and recover at the barbecue hut or cake buffet.

+++ Information on how to get there +++
Sufficient free parking spaces are available on site. Stewards help with the briefing. Admission is free!

Open Day 2019 on Saturday, 21 September 2019

Campus of the Research Institute for the Biology of Farm Animals 
(FBN Dummerstorf), Wilhelm-Stahl-Allee 2, 18196 Dummerstorf, Germany

Program 10:00-16:00 hours


Lecture hall Conference centre

11:00 a.m. 
The history of milking
Dr. Peter Sanftleben (LFA)

12:00 noon 
The discovery of the inner clock
PD Dr. Pål Westermark (FBN)

1:00 p.m. 
Musculature in livestock - much more than meat
Dr. Claudia Kalbe (FBN)

2:00 p.m. 
Sugars as an identification card for the immune system
PD Dr. Sebastian Galuska (FBN)

PRESENTATIONS - 28 stations (see map)

  • Open Secrets of Breeding Success [1]
  • Graspable statistics [1]
  • The bee info mobile of the national federation of the beekeepers M-V e.V. [1/2]
  • Molecular diversity in the barn - use of genetic information for breeding and biodiversity research [2]
  • A closer look into the cell [2]
  • From phosphorus to the bone - detailed structural analyses as indicators for animal health and welfare [2]
  • Why are piglets castrated? ( Grilled boar and sow meat for tasting) [4]
  • How much fat is in a cow’s hair? - Fatty acid pattern in the hair as a marker for the energy status of cows [4].
  • When lasers make cells fly - laser microdissection [4]
  • Sausage scanner - visible and hidden fat [4]
  • How high is my level of blood sugar? [6]
  • Feel it in the air - measurement of oxidation of cornflakes carbohydrates in breathing air [6]
  • Microworlds in cow rumen under the microscope [6]
  • Mini farmed animals: Insects - a valuable source of food protein [6]
  • Stupid goat? - Learning attempts with dwarf goats [7]
  • MultiExpert - Animal monitoring in the farrowing house [7]
  • A mouthful of stress - what your saliva tells us (it's possible to investigate your own saliva samples) [7]
  • The voice betrays the mood [7]
  • From the egg to the embryo [7]
  • Open surgery - reproductive medicine in large animals [8]
  • Kälberwunschklinik - Assisted reproduction in farm animals [8]
  • And who' s the fastest milker? [9]
  • Peas, beans, lupins - vegetable protein on the plate and in the trough [9]
  • Doing research from practice for practice [9]
  • Animal enclosure with mutton [9]
  • All about mice. Introducing the laboratory for model animals [10]
  • Guided tour through the Experimental Plant Cattle every one half hour [11]
  • Guided tour through the experimental pig farm every hour on full hour [12].


  • Sea of knowledge - games for young people and the young-at-heart
  • Quiz - Knowledge Safari
  • Animal nursery
  • Fire Brigade Dummerstorf: Splash and Bounce Games
  • A tasty experiment for the little ones: ice cream - selfmade!
  • Hourly carriage rides to the pig experimental facility
  • Animals knead for small and young at heart - the most beautiful creations will be awarded!
    award ceremony at 14:30 hrs
  • Food, drinks and music are available

Annex program flyer with map of the area

The Leibniz Association
The Leibniz Association connects 93 independent research institutions that range in focus from the natural, engineering and environmental sciences via economics, spatial and social sciences to the humanities. Leibniz Institutes address issues of social, economic and ecological relevance. They conduct knowledge-driven and applied basic research, maintain scientific infrastructure and provide research-based services.
The Leibniz Association identifies focus areas for knowledge transfer to policy-makers, academia, business and the public. Leibniz institutions collaborate intensively with universities – in the form of “Leibniz ScienceCampi” (thematic partnerships between university and non-university research institutes), for example – as well as with industry and other partners at home and abroad. 
They are subject to an independent evaluation procedure that is unparalleled in its transparency. Due to the importance of the institutions for the country as a whole, they are funded jointly by the Federation and the Länder, employing some 19,100 individuals, including 9,900 researchers. The entire budget of all the institutes is approximately 1.9 billion Euros.

Photographs FBN:
People and animals will be the focus of the Open Day 2019. Of course there will also be again the "smart goats", here with Dr. Christian Nawroth and Kathrina Rosenberger, a doctoral student from Austria,  as well as the famous Dummestorf mice. Also Kristina Zlatina from the Reproductive Biology Institute is looking forward to interested visitors with many questions.

Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology (FBN)
Wilhelm-Stahl-Allee 2, 18196 Dummerstorf
Director: Prof. Dr. Klaus Wimmers
T +49 38208-68 600
E wimmers{at} 

Scientific Organisation
Dr. Norbert K. Borowy 
Wilhelm-Stahl-Allee 2, 18196 Dummerstorf
T +49 38208-68 605
E borowy{at}