Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Multiple Allee effects and population management

(S)pecific population models of species... could help reveal how component Allee effects interact in nature. This endeavour is especially important in systems where human activity has a significant role, if sustainable development and conserved biodiversity are to remain primary goals of conservation biology.

I briefly mentioned this paper, Multiple Allee effects and population management, in class. It contains a nice review of the issue and is, I think, a good example of how ecology and conservation biology are well integrated these days

Allee effects, strongly related to the extinction vulnerability of populations and gradually becoming acknowledged by both theoretically oriented and applied ecologists, have already been shown to have important roles in the dynamics of many populations. Although not yet widely recognized, two or more Allee effects can occur simultaneously in the same population. Here, we review the evidence for multiple Allee effects and show that their interactions can take several forms, many of which are far from inconsequential. We suggest that more research is needed to assess the prevalence and interactions of multiple Allee effects, as failing to take them into account could have adverse consequences for the management of threatened or exploited populations.

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