Population outbreaks in a discrete world.
We present and analyze a simple three-patch host-parasitoid model where population growth is discrete. The model gives solutions that are qualitatively similar to the stable large-amplitude patterns in space found in reaction-diffusion theory. In the context of host-parasitoid interactions, the large-amplitude portions of the solution can be thought of as spatially localized host population outbreaks. Here, we show that the biological requirements for localized population outbreaks in a discrete world are identical to those found in reaction- diffusion theory. Furthermore, the model conveniently allows investigation into the robustness of these population outbreaks under the influence of density-dependent dispersal behavior. We find that localized population outbreaks in space can still occur with modest amounts of pursuit and aggregative behavior by parasitoids. We end by showing that evidence from a real host-parasitoid system is consistent with the predictions of the model.
McCann, K; Hastings, A; Harrison, S; Wilson, W
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