By Franck Courchamp
Allee results are (broadly) outlined as a decline in person health at low inhabitants measurement or density. they could lead to severe inhabitants thresholds less than which populations crash to extinction. As such, they're very proper to many conservation programmes, the place scientists and executives are usually operating with populations which have been lowered to low densities or small numbers. there are a number of mechanisms which can create Allee results together with mating structures, predation, environmental amendment, and social interactions. The abrupt and unexpected collapses of many exploited populations is only one representation of the necessity to convey Allee results to the leading edge of conservation and administration thoughts. Allee results in Ecology and Conservation presents a concise but authoritative evaluate of the subject, collating and integrating a extensively dispersed literature from quite a few fields - marine and terrestrial, plant and animal, theoretical and empirical, educational and utilized. This available textual content, with its transparent and easy factors of either empirical observations and theoretical predications is especially appropriate for pro and educational ecologists requiring an summary of the state of the art in Allee influence learn, in addition to for graduate scholars in inhabitants ecology and conservation biology. it is going to even be of relevance to a large readership of execs in conservation and administration requiring a concise precis of the subject.
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Additional info for Allee Effects in Ecology and Conservation
The dilution effect leads to a component Allee effect in predation mortality. In natural systems there are, of course, a variety of mechanisms which stabilize predator-prey dynamics. The most obvious is that prey maintain high density or large population size via some behaviour such as aggregation or synchrony (see below). 1). This is common where prey use a predation-avoidance mechanism, such as crypsis, which is more effective at low density (Seitz el al. 2001). Spatial or temporal refuges from predation may also stabilize predator-prey dynamics (Gascoigne and Lipcius 2004a).
Note, however, that coloniality in seabirds may have evolved not primarily for predator protection but rather as a consequence of exploiting resources—schools of fish or invertebrates—which are (or were) abundant but are also very patchy and unpredictable in space and time (Danchin and Wagner 1997, Grunbaum and Veit 2003). This 'foraging' Allee effect is discussed further below. Gregariousness may also be a side effect of limited nesting sites such as cliffs and offshore islands, although birds which nest in more accessible sites 44 Mechanisms for Allee effects (such as many gulls and terns) are still colonial, despite having cryptic eggs and young which on the face of it would be less visible away from high density, noisy and very obvious colonies (Lack 1968).
Well-known mechanisms for reproductive Allee effects include fertilization efficiency in sessile organisms, mate finding in mobile organisms and cooperative breeding. 1. Fertilization efficiency in sessile organisms How it works Sessile organisms live permanently attached to land or seabed—plants are an obvious example but many animals are also sessile during reproductive maturity: notably marine invertebrates such as sponges, corals, anemones, oysters etc. Others are not obligately sessile but nonetheless move around very little; this includes most bivalves and echinoderms and many polychaete worms, as well as others; we might term these 'semi-sessile'.