The evolution of parasite manipulation of host dispersal.
We investigate the evolution of manipulation of host dispersal behaviour by parasites using spatially explicit individual-based simulations. We find that when dispersal is local, parasites always gain from increasing their hosts' dispersal rate, although the evolutionary outcome is determined by the costs-to-benefits ratio. However, when dispersal can be non-local, we show that parasites investing in an intermediate dispersal distance of their hosts are favoured even when the manipulation is not costly, due to the intrinsic spatial dynamics of the host-parasite interaction. Our analysis highlights the crucial importance of ecological spatial dynamics in evolutionary processes and reveals the theoretical possibility that parasites could manipulate their hosts' dispersal.
Lion, S; van Baalen, M; Wilson, WG
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