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  Subjects -> ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES (Total: 755 journals)
    - ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES (690 journals)
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ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES (690 journals)            First | 1 2 3 4 5 6 7     

Midwest Studies In Philosophy     Hybrid Journal   (11 followers)
Mine Water and the Environment     Hybrid Journal   (6 followers)
Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change     Hybrid Journal   (12 followers)
Modern Asian Studies     Hybrid Journal   (4 followers)
Modern Cartography Series     Full-text available via subscription   (6 followers)
Mountain Research and Development     Open Access   (3 followers)
Multequina     Open Access  
Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis     Hybrid Journal   (2 followers)
Mutation Research/Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis     Hybrid Journal   (7 followers)
Natur und Recht     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Natural Areas Journal     Full-text available via subscription   (7 followers)
Natural Hazards     Hybrid Journal   (97 followers)
Natural Resources     Open Access  
Natural Resources and Environmental Issues     Open Access   (5 followers)
Nature and Culture     Full-text available via subscription   (9 followers)
NeuroToxicology     Hybrid Journal   (1 follower)
Neurotoxicology and Teratology     Hybrid Journal   (2 followers)
NEW SOLUTIONS: A Journal of Environmental and Occupational Health Policy     Full-text available via subscription   (6 followers)
New Zealand Journal of Environmental Law     Full-text available via subscription   (2 followers)
NJAS - Wageningen Journal of Life Sciences     Full-text available via subscription   (1 follower)
Noise Notes     Full-text available via subscription   (3 followers)
Observatorio Medioambiental     Open Access  
Occupational and Environmental Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (8 followers)
Ocean Acidification     Open Access  
Oecologia     Hybrid Journal   (24 followers)
Oikos     Hybrid Journal   (26 followers)
Open Journal of Ecology     Open Access   (10 followers)
Open Journal of Marine Science     Open Access   (6 followers)
Open Journal of Modern Hydrology     Open Access   (1 follower)
Our Nature     Open Access   (2 followers)
Oxford Journal of Legal Studies     Hybrid Journal   (14 followers)
Pace Environmental Law Review     Open Access   (4 followers)
Packaging, Transport, Storage and Security of Radioactive Material     Hybrid Journal   (2 followers)
Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments     Hybrid Journal   (3 followers)
Papers on Global Change IGBP     Open Access   (1 follower)
Particle and Fibre Toxicology     Open Access   (3 followers)
Pastos y Forrajes     Open Access  
Pesquisa em Educação Ambiental     Open Access  
Pharmacology & Therapeutics     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior     Hybrid Journal   (1 follower)
Philosophical Studies     Hybrid Journal   (6 followers)
Physio-Géo     Open Access   (2 followers)
Pittsburgh Journal of Environmental and Public Health Law     Open Access   (1 follower)
Planet     Open Access  
Planning & Environmental Law: Issues and decisions that impact the built and natural environments     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Plant Ecology & Diversity     Partially Free   (9 followers)
Plant Knowledge Journal     Open Access   (2 followers)
Plant, Cell & Environment     Hybrid Journal   (4 followers)
Polar Journal     Hybrid Journal   (1 follower)
Policy Studies     Hybrid Journal   (6 followers)
Policy Studies Journal     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Polish Polar Research     Open Access   (4 followers)
Political Studies     Hybrid Journal   (21 followers)
Political Studies Review     Hybrid Journal   (14 followers)
Population and Environment     Hybrid Journal   (6 followers)
Population Ecology     Hybrid Journal   (9 followers)
Population Studies: A Journal of Demography     Hybrid Journal   (4 followers)
Postcolonial Studies     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Practice Periodical of Hazardous, Toxic, and Radioactive Waste Management     Full-text available via subscription   (3 followers)
Presence Teleoperators & Virtual Environments     Hybrid Journal   (1 follower)
Presidential Studies Quarterly     Hybrid Journal   (3 followers)
Procedia Environmental Sciences     Open Access   (2 followers)
Proceedings of ICE, Waste and Resource Management     Hybrid Journal   (3 followers)
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part M: Journal of Engineering for the Maritime Environment     Hybrid Journal   (1 follower)
Proceedings of the International Academy of Ecology and Environmental Sciences     Open Access   (4 followers)
Process Safety and Environmental Protection     Hybrid Journal   (3 followers)
Progress in Industrial Ecology, An International Journal     Hybrid Journal   (4 followers)
Psychological Assessment     Full-text available via subscription   (5 followers)
Public Money & Management     Hybrid Journal   (4 followers)
Public Works Management & Policy     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Qatar Foundation Annual Research Forum Proceedings     Open Access   (3 followers)
Radioactivity in the Environment     Full-text available via subscription   (4 followers)
Regional Environmental Change     Hybrid Journal   (3 followers)
Regional Studies     Hybrid Journal   (6 followers)
Religious Studies     Hybrid Journal   (9 followers)
RELP - Renewable Energy Law and Policy     Full-text available via subscription   (4 followers)
Remediation Journal     Hybrid Journal   (5 followers)
Remote Sensing Letters     Hybrid Journal   (8 followers)
Renaissance Studies     Hybrid Journal   (11 followers)
Rendiconti Lincei     Hybrid Journal  
Renewable Energy Focus     Full-text available via subscription   (7 followers)
Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities     Full-text available via subscription   (3 followers)
Research Journal of Environmental Sciences     Open Access   (1 follower)
Research Journal of Environmental Toxicology     Open Access   (2 followers)
ReSource     Full-text available via subscription  
Resources     Open Access  
Resources, Conservation and Recycling     Hybrid Journal   (9 followers)
Reuse/Recycle Newsletter     Hybrid Journal   (2 followers)
Review of English Studies     Hybrid Journal   (7 followers)
Review of Environmental Economics and Policy     Hybrid Journal   (7 followers)
Revista AIDIS de Ingeniería y Ciencias Ambientales. Investigación, desarrollo y práctica     Open Access   (2 followers)
Revista Brasileira de Engenharia Agrícola e Ambiental     Open Access   (1 follower)
Revista Capital Científico     Open Access  
Revista Chapingo. Serie Ciencias Forestales y del Ambiente     Open Access   (2 followers)
Revista de Ciências Ambientais     Open Access  
Revista de Gestão Ambiental e Sustentabilidade - GeAS     Open Access  
Revista de Salud Ambiental     Open Access  
Revista Eletrônica em Gestão, Educação e Tecnologia Ambiental     Open Access   (1 follower)
Revista Hábitat Sustenable     Open Access   (3 followers)
Revista Monografias Ambientais     Open Access  

  First | 1 2 3 4 5 6 7     

Theoretical Ecology    [9 followers]  Follow    
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
     ISSN (Print) 1874-1746 - ISSN (Online) 1874-1738
     Published by Springer-Verlag Homepage  [2187 journals]   [SJR: 1.37]   [H-I: 10]
  • Message from the editor
    • PubDate: 2014-01-23
  • Dynamics of herbivores and resources on a landscape with interspersed
           resources and refuges
    • Abstract: Abstract A tradeoff between energy gain from foraging and safety from predation in refuges is a common situation for many herbivores that are vulnerable to predation while foraging. This tradeoff affects the population dynamics of the plant–herbivore–predator interaction. A new functional response is derived based on the Holling type 2 functional response and the assumption that the herbivore can forage at a rate that maximizes its fitness. The predation rate on the herbivore is assumed to be proportional to the product of the time that the herbivore spends foraging and a risk factor that reflects the habitat complexity; where greater complexity means greater interspersion of high food quality habitat and refuge habitat, which increases the amount of the edge zone between refuge and foraging areas, making foraging safer. The snowshoe hare is chosen as an example to demonstrate the resulting dynamics of an herbivore that has been intensely studied and that undergoes well-known cycling. Two models are studied in which the optimal foraging by hares is assumed, a vegetation–hare–generalist predator model and a vegetation–hare–specialist predator model. In both cases, the results suggest that the cycling of the snowshoe hare population will be greatly moderated by optimal foraging in a habitat consisting of interspersed high quality foraging habitat and refuge habitat. However, there are also large differences in the dynamics produced by the two models as a function of predation pressure.
      PubDate: 2014-01-18
  • Infectious disease in consumer populations: dynamic consequences of
           resource-mediated transmission and infectiousness
    • Abstract: Abstract Nonhost species can strongly affect the timing and progression of epidemics. One central interaction—between hosts, their resources, and parasites—remains surprisingly underdeveloped from a theoretical perspective. Furthermore, key epidemiological traits that govern disease spread are known to depend on resource density. We tackle both issues here using models that fuse consumer–resource and epidemiological theory. Motivated by recent studies of a phytoplankton–zooplankton–fungus system, we derive and analyze a family of dynamic models for parasite spread among consumers in which transmission depends on consumer (host) and resource densities. These models yield four key insights. First, host–resource cycling can lower mean host density and inhibit parasite invasion. Second, host–resource cycling can create Allee effects (bistability) if parasites increase mean host density by reducing the amplitude of host–resource cycles. Third, parasites can stabilize host–resource cycles; however, host–resource cycling can also cause disease cycling. Fourth, resource dependence of epidemiological traits helps to govern the relative dominance of these different behaviors. However, these resource dependencies largely have quantitative rather than qualitative effects on these three-species dynamics. Given the extent of these results, host–resource–parasite interactions should become more fundamental components of the burgeoning theory for the community ecology of infectious diseases.
      PubDate: 2014-01-17
  • Restoration of plant–pollinator interaction networks via species
    • Abstract: Abstract The recent decline in pollinator biodiversity, notably in the case of wild bee populations, puts both wild and agricultural ecosystems at risk of ecological community collapse. This has triggered calls for further study of these mutualistic communities in order to more effectively inform restoration of disturbed plant–pollinator communities. Here, we use a dynamic network model to test a variety of translocation strategies for restoring a community after it experiences the loss of some of its species. We consider the reintroduction of extirpated species, both immediately after the original loss and after the community has reequilibrated, as well as the introduction of other native species that were originally absent from the community. We find that reintroducing multiple highly interacting generalist species best restores species richness for lightly disturbed communities. However, for communities that experience significant losses in biodiversity, introducing generalist species that are not originally present in the community may most effectively restore species richness, although in these cases the resultant community often shares few species with the original community. We also demonstrate that the translocation of a single species has a minimal impact on both species richness and the frequency of community collapse. These results have important implications for restoration practices in the face of varying degrees of community perturbations, the refinement of which is crucial for community management.
      PubDate: 2014-01-07
  • (A bit) Earlier or later is always better: Phenological shifts in
           consumer–resource interactions
    • Abstract: Abstract Phenology is a crucial life history trait for species interactions and it can have great repercussions on the persistence of communities and ecosystems. Changes in phenology caused by climate change can disrupt species interactions causing decreases in consumer growth rates, as suggested by the match–mismatch hypothesis (MMH). However, it is still not clear what the long-term consequences of such phenological changes are. In this paper, we present models in which phenology and consumer–resource feedbacks determine long-term community dynamics. Our results show that consumer viability is constrained by limits in the amount of phenological mismatch with their resources, in accordance with the MMH, but the effects of phenological shifts are often nonmonotonic. Consumers generally have higher abundances when they recruit some time before or after their resources because this reduces the long-term effects of overexploitation that would otherwise occur under closer synchrony. Changes in the duration of recruitment phenologies also have important impacts on community stability, with shorter phenologies promoting oscillations and cycles. For small community modules, the effects of phenological shifts on populations can be explained, to a great extent, as superpositions of their effects on consumer–resource pairs. We highlight that consumer–resource feedbacks and overexploitation, which are not typically considered in phenological models, are important factors shaping the long-term responses to phenological changes caused by climate change.
      PubDate: 2013-12-21
  • Dual invasion analysis: a general model of novel ecological dynamics due
           to Bt product and resistant pests in wild settings
    • Abstract: Abstract Transgenic Bt crops have been integrated as a central component of the agricultural policies of many nations across the globe due to their insecticidal properties. While focus on increased yield resulting from the use of Bt crops has overshadowed the concerns of pest populations developing resistance, resistance has been recently discovered in even highly managed fields. One issue that has received less attention is the resulting set of ecological dynamics from escaped Bt products into wild settings. I present a differential equation model of the ecological interaction between a wild plant–pest community and an invading Bt toxin-producing plant and the ensuing evolution of pest resistance. Key to this model investigation is the assumption of energy costs with both the production of Bt toxin by Bt plants and the resistance to Bt toxin exhibited by resistant pest individuals. Results show that persistence of the initial invading Bt plant population is possible through an intransitive loop dynamic. Furthermore, coexistence of wild-type plants and pests as well as Bt-producing plants and resistant pests is possible through the dynamics resultant from energy trade-offs.
      PubDate: 2013-12-12
  • A quantitative genetic approach for predicting ecological change in
           biological communities
    • Abstract: Abstract Ecological studies of communities have become increasingly focused on the role of genetics. These studies often conclude that genetics and evolution play an important role in community structure and function. For instance, studies have shown that the structure of insect communities associated with a host plant is heritable and therefore can potentially evolve. However, when studying communities of interacting species two problems are faced: (1) the traits that determine the outcomes of these interactions are often unknown, and (2) communities are normally highly multidimensional (n-dimensional for n species). In order to surmount these problems, we adapt a commonly used approach for studying the evolution of multivariate quantitative traits to the study of biological communities. Specifically, we propose utilizing a community-based genetic covariance matrix (G-matrix) and an associated vector of community selection gradients for predicting changes in community composition, where the “traits” under study are the abundances, or other properties, of various interacting species. This approach capitalizes on the relative ease with which data on the abundance of individuals interacting with individuals of a focal species (e.g., abundances of various herbivorous insects on a plant) can be collected and on the utility of the quantitative genetic approach for predicting multidimensional evolution. In order to evaluate the utility and accuracy of the G-matrix approach for predicting the evolution of communities, we develop and analyze numerical simulations of evolving communities. Results of these simulations show that an approach based on community G-matrices and selection gradients provides a rich understanding of how underlying genetics shape community structure and, in many cases, accurately predicts how community structure changes over time.
      PubDate: 2013-12-04
  • Resource competition and community response to fertilization: the outcome
           depends on spatial strategies
    • Abstract: Abstract Decreases in plant species richness and shifts in community structure following fertilization are usually attributed to increasing light limitation. However, there is increasing evidence that light limitation alone does not account for all of the observed effects of fertilization on plant communities. We present a model of competition for a single, spatially heterogeneous resource that shows fertility-mediated changes in community structure without light competition. This model predicts that in a low-productivity spatially heterogeneous habitat, species that interact with the resource environment over small spatial scales may exclude species that experience the environment at larger spatial scales, even when the latter species are better resource competitors in a uniform environment (have a lower R*). Increasing overall habitat fertility under these conditions minimizes the effects of spatial heterogeneity on the species that forage at a larger spatial scale, resulting in changes in species dominance and the potential for species coexistence. This analysis suggests that considering differences in the spatial scales at which species interact with environmental heterogeneity may help explain observed changes in community structure following fertilization.
      PubDate: 2013-11-21
  • The effect of predator limitation on the dynamicsof simple food chains
    • Abstract: Abstract We investigate the influence of competition between predators on the dynamics of bitrophic predator–prey systems and of tritrophic food chains. Competition between predators is implemented either as interference competition, or as a density-dependent mortality rate. With interference competition, the paradox of enrichment is reduced or completely suppressed, but otherwise, the dynamical behavior of the systems is not fundamentally different from that of the Rosenzweig–MacArthur model, which contains no predator competition and shows only continuous transitions between fixed points or periodic oscillations. In contrast, with density-dependent predator mortality, the system shows a surprisingly rich dynamical behavior. In particular, decreasing the density regulation of the predator can induce catastrophic shifts from a stable fixed point to a large oscillation where the predator chases the prey through a cycle that brings both species close to the threshold of extinction. Other catastrophic bifurcations, such as subcritical Hopf bifurcations and saddle-node bifurcations of limit cycles, do also occur. In tritrophic food chains, we find again that fixed points in the model with predator interference become unstable only through Hopf bifurcations, which can also be subcritical, in contrast to the bitrophic situation. The model with a density limitation shows again catastrophic destabilization of fixed points and various nonlocal bifurcations. In addition, chaos occurs for both models in appropriate parameter ranges.
      PubDate: 2013-11-13
  • Range structure analysis: unveiling the internal structure of
           species’ ranges
    • Abstract: Abstract Assessing risks of local extinction and shifts in species ranges are fundamental tasks in ecology and conservation. Most studies have focused either on the border of species’ range or on complex spatiotemporal dynamics of populations within the spatial distribution of species. The internal properties of species ranges, however, have received less attention due to a general lack of simple tools. We propose a novel approach within a metapopulation framework to study species ranges based on simple mathematical rules. We formulate and test a model of population fluctuations through space to identify key factors that regulate population density. We propose that spatial variability in species abundance reflects the interaction between temporal variability in population dynamics and the spatial variability of population parameters. This approach, that we call range structure analysis, integrates temporal and spatial properties to diagnose how each parameter contributes to species occupancy throughout its geographic range.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Evolution of masting with intermittence and synchronization under the
           enhancements of fertility and survival
    • Abstract: Abstract Mast seeding is a reproductive mode in plants characterized by intermittence and intra- or interspecific synchronization. Several mechanisms have been proposed to explain the evolution of mast seeding, but the relative importance of each is still unclear due to the complex interactions among the various factors involved, i.e., the two components of masting (intermittence and synchronization), two potential advantages of masting (enhancement of fertility and survival), and the intensities of interactions among individuals through enhancement effects. Several masting studies have claimed that independent selective forces may operate to drive the evolution of intermittence and synchrony, although a theoretical framework for the action of these independent selective forces has not yet been established. In the present study, we investigated the relationships among these factors by analyzing a mathematical model and conducting computer simulations. We found that intense interactions among plant individuals, through the enhancement of fertility or survival, promoted synchronous reproduction while concomitantly suppressing evolution of intermittence. We also demonstrated that enhancement of either fertility or survivorship alone may be insufficient for the evolution of masting, whereas a combination of the two effects can significantly promote it. This suggested a complementary relationship between two well-known hypotheses for the origin of masting, namely, the pollen/pollinator hypothesis and the predator satiation hypothesis.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Multi-species SIR models from a dynamical Bayesian perspective
    • Abstract: Abstract Multi-species compartment epidemic models, such as the multi-species susceptible–infectious–recovered (SIR) model, are extensions of the classic SIR models, which are used to explore the transient dynamics of pathogens that infect multiple hosts in a large population. In this article, we propose a dynamical Bayesian hierarchical SIR (HSIR) model, to capture the stochastic or random nature of an epidemic process in a multi-species SIR (with recovered becoming susceptible again) dynamical setting, under hidden mass balance constraints. We call this a Bayesian hierarchical multi-species SIR (MSIRB) model. Different from a classic multi-species SIR model (which we call MSIRC), our approach imposes mass balance on the underlying true counts rather than, improperly, on the noisy observations. Moreover, the MSIRB model can capture the discrete nature of, as well as uncertainties in, the epidemic process.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Consumer–resource dynamics of indirect interactions in a
           mutualism–parasitism food web module
    • Abstract: Abstract Food web dynamics are well known to vary with indirect interactions, classic examples including apparent competition, intraguild predation, exploitative competition, and trophic cascades of food chains. Such food web modules entailing predation and competition have been the focus of much theory, whereas modules involving mutualism have received far less attention. We examined an empirically common food web module involving mutualistic (N 2) and parasitic (N 3) consumers exploiting a resource of a basal mutualist (N 1), as illustrated by plants, pollinators, and nectar robbers. This mutualism–parasitism food web module is structurally similar to exploitative competition, suggesting that the module of two consumers exploiting a resource is unstable. Rather than parasitic consumers destabilizing the module through (−,−) indirect interactions, two mechanisms associated with the mutualism can actually enhance the persistence of the module. First, the positive feedback of mutualism favors coexistence in stable limit cycles, whereby (+,−) indirect interactions emerge in which increases in N 2 have positive effects on N 3 and increases in N 3 have negative effects on N 2. This (+,−) indirect interaction arising from the saturating positive feedback of mutualism has broad feasibility across many types of food web modules entailing mutualism. Second, optimization of resource exploitation by the mutualistic consumer can lead to persistence of the food web module in a stable equilibrium. The mutualism–parasitism food web module is a basic unit of food webs in which mutualism favors its persistence simply through density-dependent population dynamics, rather than parasitism destabilizing the module.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Forcing by rare species and intransitive loops creates distinct bouts of
           extinction events conditioned by spatial pattern in competition
    • Abstract: Abstract Using a spatially explicit multiple species competition framework, the pattern of extinction for an effect/response competition cellular automata model is presented. It is found that, for a particular matrix with a negative row/column sum covariance, (1) there are two phases of transient behavior, presented in the framework of graph partitioning, and (2) the ultimate behavior of the system in space can be understood as mainly the operation of three distinct intransitive competitive loops. Of particular interest is the effect that a set of initially excluded species have on the final outcome of spatial pattern formation. Even though initial exclusion happens quite rapidly, and it would seem that species excluded early could not have an effect on the eventual outcomes of competition, there is a clear statistical effect, contributing to the extant literature suggesting that rare or seemingly inconsequential species can effect the behavior of the common and obvious ones.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Synchronization in ecological systems by weak dispersal coupling with time
    • Abstract: Abstract One of the most salient spatiotemporal patterns in population ecology is the synchronization of fluctuating local populations across vast spatial extent. Synchronization of abundance has been widely observed across a range of spatial scales in relation to the rate of dispersal among discrete populations. However, the dependence of synchrony on patterns of among-patch movement across heterogeneous landscapes has been largely ignored. Here, we consider the duration of movement between two predator–prey communities connected by weak dispersal and its effect on population synchrony. More specifically, we introduce time-delayed dispersal to incorporate the finite transmission time between discrete populations across a continuous landscape. Reducing the system to a phase model using weakly connected network theory, it is found that the time delay is an important factor determining the nature and stability of phase-locked states. Our analysis predicts enhanced convergence to stable synchronous fluctuations in general and a decreased ability of systems to produce in-phase synchronization dynamics in the presence of delayed dispersal. These results introduce delayed dispersal as a tool for understanding the importance of dispersal time across a landscape matrix in affecting metacommunity dynamics. They further highlight the importance of landscape and dispersal patterns for predicting the onset of synchrony between weakly coupled populations.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Coevolution of resource trade-offs driving species interactions in a
           host–parasite network: an exploratory model
    • Abstract: Abstract Patterns of specialization asymmetry, where specialist species interact mainly with generalists while generalists interact with both generalists and specialists, are often observed in mutualistic and antagonistic bipartite ecological networks. These have been explained in terms of the relative abundance of species, using a null model that assigns links in proportion to abundance, but doubts have been raised as to whether this offers a complete explanation. In particular, host–parasite networks offer a variety of examples in which the reverse patterns are observed. We propose that the link between specificity and species richness may also be driven by the coevolution of hosts and parasites, as hosts allocate resources to optimize defense against parasites, and parasites to optimize attack on hosts. In this hypothesis, species interactions are a result of resource allocations. This novel concept, linking together many different arguments for network structures, is introduced through the adaptive dynamics of a simple ecological toy system of two hosts and two parasites. We analyze the toy model and its functionality, demonstrating that coevolution leads to specialization asymmetry in networks with closely related parasites or fast host mutation rates, but not in networks with more distantly related species. Having constructed the toy model and tested its applicability, our model can now be expanded to the full problem of a larger system.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Optimal barrier zones for stopping the invasion of        class="a-plus-plus">Aedes aegypti mosquitoes via
           transgenic or sterile insect techniques
    • Abstract: Abstract Biological invasions have dramatically altered the natural world by threatening native species and their communities. Moreover, when the invading species is a vector for human disease, there are further substantive public health and economic impacts. The development of transgenic technologies is being explored in relation to new approaches for the biological control of insect pests. We investigate the use of two control strategies, classical sterile insect techniques and transgenic late-acting bisex lethality (Release of Insects carrying a Dominant Lethal), for controlling invasion of the mosquito Aedes aegypti using a spatial stage-structured mathematical model. In particular, we explore the use of a barrier zone of sterile/transgenic insects to prevent or impede the invasion of mosquitoes. We show that the level of control required is not only highly sensitive to the rate at which the sterile/transgenic males are released in the barrier zone but also to the spatial range of release. Our models characterise how the distribution of sterile/transgenic mosquitoes in the barrier zone can be controlled so as to minimise the number of mass-produced insects required for the arrest of species invasion. We predict that, given unknown rates of mosquito dispersal, management strategies should concentrate on larger release areas rather than more intense release rates for optimal control.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Global versus local extinction in a network model of
           plant–pollinator communities
    • Abstract: Abstract The loss of a species from an ecological community can trigger a cascade of additional extinctions; the complex interactions that comprise ecological communities make the dynamics and impacts of such a cascade challenging to predict. Previous studies have typically considered global extinctions, where a species cannot re-enter a community once it is lost. However, in some cases a species only becomes locally extinct, and may be able to reinvade from surrounding communities. Here, we use a dynamic, Boolean network model of plant–pollinator community assembly to analyze the differences between global and local extinction events in mutualistic communities. As expected, we find that compared to global extinctions, communities respond to local extinctions with lower biodiversity loss, and less variation in topological network properties. We demonstrate that in the face of global extinctions, larger communities suffer greater biodiversity loss than smaller communities when similar proportions of species are lost. Conversely, smaller communities suffer greater loss in the face of local extinctions. We show that targeting species with the most interacting partners causes more biodiversity loss than random extinctions in the case of global, but not local, extinctions. These results extend our understanding of how mutualistic communities respond to species loss, with implications for community management and conservation efforts.
      PubDate: 2013-11-01
  • Improving communications between theoretical ecologists, mathematical
           ecologists, and ecological modelers: response to the critique of our book
           How species
    • PubDate: 2013-10-24
  • A general mathematical framework for the analysis of spatiotemporal point
    • Abstract: Abstract Spatial and stochastic models are often straightforward to simulate but difficult to analyze mathematically. Most of the mathematical methods available for nonlinear stochastic and spatial models are based on heuristic rather than mathematically justified assumptions, so that, e.g., the choice of the moment closure can be considered more of an art than a science. In this paper, we build on recent developments in specific branch of probability theory, Markov evolutions in the space of locally finite configurations, to develop a mathematically rigorous and practical framework that we expect to be widely applicable for theoretical ecology. In particular, we show how spatial moment equations of all orders can be systematically derived from the underlying individual-based assumptions. Further, as a new mathematical development, we go beyond mean-field theory by discussing how spatial moment equations can be perturbatively expanded around the mean-field model. While we have suggested such a perturbation expansion in our previous research, the present paper gives a rigorous mathematical justification. In addition to bringing mathematical rigor, the application of the mathematically well-established framework of Markov evolutions allows one to derive perturbation expansions in a transparent and systematic manner, which we hope will facilitate the application of the methods in theoretical ecology.
      PubDate: 2013-10-22
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