Population Systems

I. Population Structure

A. Density

B. Dispersion

C. Metapopulation Structure

D. Age Structure

E. Sex Ratio

F. Genetic Composition

G. Social Insects

II. Population Processes

A. Natality

B. Mortality

C. Dispersal

III. Life History Characteristics

IV. Parameter Estimation V Summary

THE VARIABLES THAT DETERMINE THE ABUNDANCE AND DISTRIBUTION of a population, in time and space, constitute a population system (Berryman 1981). The basic elements of this system are the individual members of the population, variables describing population size and structure, processes that affect population size and structure, and the environment. These elements of the population system largely determine the capacity of the population to increase in size and maintain itself within a shifting landscape mosaic of habitable patches. This chapter summarizes these population variables and processes, their integration in life history strategies, and their contribution to change in population size and distribution.

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