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Annu Rev Entomol. 2001;46:79-110.

Insect biodemography.

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Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis, California 95616, USA.


Biodemography is an emerging subdiscipline of classical demography that brings life table techniques, mortality models, experimental systems, and comparative methods to bear on questions concerned with the fundamental determinants of mortality, longevity, aging, and life span. It is important to entomology because it provides a secure and comprehensive actuarial foundation for life table and mortality analysis, it suggests new possibilities for the use of model insect systems in the study of aging and mortality dynamics, and it integrates an interdisciplinary perspective on demographic concepts and actuarial techniques into the entomological literature. This paper describes the major life table formulae and mortality models used to analyze the actuarial properties of insects; summarizes the literature on adult insect life span, including a discussion of basic concepts; identifies the major correlates of extended longevity; and suggests new ideas for using demographic concepts in both basic and applied entomology.

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