Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Proc Biol Sci. 2005 May 7;272(1566):913-8.

Density-dependent dispersal and spatial population dynamics.

Author information

Department of Biology, University of Tromsø, N-9037 Tromsø, Norway.


The synchronization of the dynamics of spatially subdivided populations is of both fundamental and applied interest in population biology. Based on theoretical studies, dispersal movements have been inferred to be one of the most general causes of population synchrony, yet no empirical study has mapped distance-dependent estimates of movement rates on the actual pattern of synchrony in species that are known to exhibit population synchrony. Northern vole and lemming species are particularly well-known for their spatially synchronized population dynamics. Here, we use results from an experimental study to demonstrate that tundra vole dispersal movements did not act to synchronize population dynamics in fragmented habitats. In contrast to the constant dispersal rate assumed in earlier theoretical studies, the tundra vole, and many other species, exhibit negative density-dependent dispersal. Simulations of a simple mathematical model, parametrized on the basis of our experimental data, verify the empirical results, namely that the observed negative density-dependent dispersal did not have a significant synchronizing effect.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center