When Group Dispersal and Allee Effect Shape Metapopulation Dynamics

Samuel Soubeyrand, Anna-Liisa Laine
2017 Annales Zoologici Fennici  
Soubeyrand, S. & Laine, A.-L. 2017: When group dispersal and Allee effect shape metapopulation dynamics. -Ann. Zool. Fennici 54: 123-138. The dispersal ability of a species will be critical for how population dynamics are realized in spatially structured systems. To date, the effect of group dispersal on metapopulation dynamics is poorly understood. Here, we investigate how group dispersal and Allee effects shape metapopulation dynamics identifying conditions in which group dispersal can be an
more » ... dvantage over independent dispersal. We approach this question by building and analysing a Markovian random walk for metapopulation dynamics including group dispersal and Allee effect. This Markovian random walk is analogous to the discrete-time Stochastic Patch Occupancy Model (SPOM). We find that intermediate group sizes may lead to larger and more sustainable metapopulations in the presence of an Allee effect. Hence, understanding how group size variation and realized (meta)population dynamics are linked offers an exciting future venue for research that is expected to yield key insights into the ecology and evolution of populations occupying spatially structured environments.
doi:10.5735/086.054.0112 fatcat:sbfh6a4i2zg3vmw6ljdz7j7xda