Download Complex Population Dynamics: A Theoretical/Empirical by Peter Turchin PDF

By Peter Turchin

Why do organisms turn into tremendous considerable 12 months after which appear to disappear many years later? Why do inhabitants outbreaks particularly species occur kind of frequently in sure destinations, yet in basic terms irregularly (or by no means in any respect) in different destinations? advanced inhabitants dynamics have interested biologists for many years. through bringing jointly mathematical versions, statistical analyses, and box experiments, this booklet bargains a finished new synthesis of the speculation of inhabitants oscillations.

Peter Turchin first stories the conceptual instruments that ecologists use to enquire inhabitants oscillations, introducing inhabitants modeling and the statistical research of time sequence facts. He then presents an in-depth dialogue of numerous case studies--including the larch budmoth, southern pine beetle, pink grouse, voles and lemmings, snowshoe hare, and ungulates--to advance a brand new research of the mechanisms that force inhabitants oscillations in nature. via such paintings, the writer argues, ecologists can strengthen common legislation of inhabitants dynamics that would support flip ecology right into a really quantitative and predictive science.

Complex inhabitants Dynamics integrates theoretical and empirical reviews right into a significant new synthesis of present wisdom approximately inhabitants dynamics. it's also a pioneering paintings that units the direction for ecology's destiny as a predictive science.

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Extra info for Complex Population Dynamics: A Theoretical/Empirical Synthesis

Example text

Every body continues in its state of rest, or of uniform motion in a right [= straight] line, unless it is compelled to change that state by forces impressed upon it” (Newton 1729). But, how did Newton achieve this insight? Einstein and Infeld (1938) return to the motion of the cart. If we give it a push, it will move a certain distance and stop. Suppose we oil the wheels and smooth the road? 2 EXPONENTIAL GROWTH 23 the same push, it will move farther before stopping (because we have reduced the forces tending to stop the cart).

For one, I doubt that many ecologists truly suffer from physics envy (as opposed to using it as a rhetorical technique to motivate colleagues to do better science). The ones I know would much rather chase butterflies in the field than become the one-hundredth member of a supercyclophasotron team! I also think that population dynamics is a much more exciting field, being (as I hope to demonstrate in this book) on the brink of a major synthesis, compared with high-energy particle physics, where most of the excitement is in the past.

Before discussing why exponential growth may qualify as a law, let us briefly review the logic underlying its derivation. 1 Derivation of the Exponential Model I begin with two postulates. Postulate 1 states that the number of organisms in a population can change only as a result of births, deaths, immigrations, and emigrations. If we use an area of sufficient size in the definition of population, then we can approximately set immigration and emigration terms to zero, so that the number of organisms would change only as a result of births and deaths.

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