NAU Biology BIO 326
Syllabus The Class Communicate Library Instructor
HelpGet Started
BIO326 : Population : Population Dynamics : Lesson

Population Dynamics: Lesson

Canada geese Glossary terms that are important in this lesson:

Density-dependence, density-independence, deterministic, emigration, exponential, fecundity, geometric, habitat fragmentation, immigration, intrinsic rate of increase, metapopulation, mortality, rate, regulation, steady-state, stochastic, territoriality

Use the outline below to guide your study of the material in this lesson. The outline follows the book, but indicates those topics the instructor feels are most important for you to learn in the course. You should read all the pages assigned, open and study the links, and learn the glossary terms.

Populations change in size and density, depending on birth rates and death rates. Environmental conditions affect life table values and population models predict future changes in population density.

I. Population Growth and Regulation

  1. Exponential Growth

  2. Geometric Growth

  3. Intrinsic Rate of Increase

  4. Growth Potential

  5. Growth Varies with Environmental Conditions

  6. Regulation of Population Size

  7. Density Dependent Factors

Fruit fliesFixed supply of foodFecundity varied inversely with density of fliesCompetition for food
Grain beetles
Rhizopertha dominica
Fixed supply of foodMortality killed all but one Competition, territoriality?
Water fleas Daphnia pulex Fixed supply of foodMortality increased, fecundity decreasedCompetition
Song sparrowsPopulation on island, density fluctuated from low to high naturallyDecreased fecundity of adults; increased mortality of juvenilesTerritoriality limited breeding males; females competed for food in breeding season; competition for food between adults and juveniles
White-tailed deerRange conditions variedFecundity varied directly with range conditions Competition for quantity and quality of food
Flax LinumSeed density variedDecreased growth; increased mortalityCompetition for resources
Horseweed Erigeron canadensisHigh seed densityIncreased mortality; growth rate of survivors increasedCompetition for resources

  1. Self-Thinning
  2. Summary

II. Temporal and Spatial Dynamics

  1. Introduction

  2. Fluctuations in Natural Populations

  3. Population Variation and Age Structure

  4. Key Factor Analysis

  5. Tracking of Environmental Change

  6. Population Cycles and Intrinsic Demographic Processes

  7. Metapopulations

  8. Stochastic Processes: Greatest impact is on small populations

When you have completed this lesson, go on to Review Questions

E-mail Professor Gaud at
or call (520) 523-7516
NAU Copyright 1999 Northern Arizona University