Is spacing behaviour coupled with predation causing the microtine density cycle? A synthesis of current process-oriented and pattern-oriented studies

N. C. Stenseth, O. N. Bjonstad, W. Falck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

116 Scopus citations

Abstract

Current ecological information on periodically fluctuating microtine populations are demonstrated to support a hypothesis involving both predation and intrinsic self-regulation as necessary and sufficient factors for explaining the 'microtine density cycle'. The structure of the cyclic time series is largely two dimensional with strong delayed density dependence. Together with recent field studies on rodent demography, our modelling suggests that trophic interaction is a likely candidate to generate the dimensionality observed for northern microtine rodent dynamics. It is shown that the trophic interaction must be fairly strong. This suggests that specialist predation is the most likely one among the classes of trophic interactions. We also argue that some - but not too strong - self-regulation must occur to generate the structure of the available time series on northern European microtines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1423-1435
Number of pages13
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume263
Issue number1376
DOIs
StatePublished - 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

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