Wildlife Population Dynamics

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Natural Resources Conservation
NRC 261
Todd Fuller

Wildlife Ecology Notes Population Demography 13 Feb 2014 NRC 261 If we want to double a population of endangered piping plovers, what should we concentrate on doing and how quickly should we expect results? Reproductive characteristics In order to reduce livestock and game losses, I want to significantly decrease the number of leopards that live on a group of large ranches in southern Africa; how often do I have to trap and how many do I have to catch? Reproductive characteristics- finds out potential of regrowth Population: a group of individuals of a species -Sometimes easy to identify sometimes not so easy/ Meaningful – is it meaningful to discuss to talk about size, growth rates, density, distribution and vital statistics. Comparable-Population can be compared with other populations or in another time its own population. Isolated – largely reproductively isolated from other populations of same species Robins- flock of robins is not a population Snapping turtles- in campus pond is a population. They are reproductively isolated. Mallard ducks- Maybe could because they are inbred ducks. But they do classify routes as a population of species Whooping Crane-Once upon a time the entire species was the population. Today, People have started setting up new migration routes and many populations. Population Dynamics - how and why populations change in numbers and distribution. Brown bats- understanding how they live in different geographic areas helps population dynamics. (all species) Population Change Exponential population growth- Where species continually increase. Steep population curve. No limit on food. Increasing at fast rates unlimited resources and no mortality. But will lead to a crash. Over eat food supply. Mule deer in Arizona- population grew from 5000-100,000 crashed down to 10,000. There was a point where they could not increase because limited resources Caribou/island- 6000-42. Humans- On a exponential growth rate, so could crash or could find out how to support ourselves with limited resources Carrying capacity (K)- S shaped growth. Under normal circumstances logistic growth occurs. Resources and area can only hold so much Logistic population growth -Amount of resources is limited -Reproductive rates levels off -Births=deaths Cyclic population change- Cycling population growth rat
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