The impact of parasitoid emergence time on host-parasitoid population dynamics

Cobbold, C.A., Roland, J. and Lewis, M.A. (2009) The impact of parasitoid emergence time on host-parasitoid population dynamics. Theoretical Population Biology, 75(2-3), pp. 201-215. (doi: 10.1016/j.tpb.2009.02.004)

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We investigate the effect of parasitoid phenology on host–parasitoid population cycles. Recent experimental research has shown that parasitized hosts can continue to interact with their unparasitized counterparts through competition. Parasitoid phenology, in particular the timing of emergence from the host, determines the duration of this competition. We construct a discrete-time host–parasitoid model in which within-generation dynamics associated with parasitoid timing is explicitly incorporated. We found that late-emerging parasitoids induce less severe, but more frequent, host outbreaks, independent of the choice of competition model. The competition experienced by the parasitized host reduces the parasitoids’ numerical response to changes in host numbers, preventing the ‘boom-bust’ dynamics associated with more efficient parasitoids. We tested our findings against experimental data for the forest tent caterpillar (Malacosoma disstria Hübner) system, where a large number of consecutive years at a high host density is synonymous with severe forest damage.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cobbold, Professor Christina
Authors: Cobbold, C.A., Roland, J., and Lewis, M.A.
Subjects:Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Mathematics and Statistics > Mathematics
Journal Name:Theoretical Population Biology
ISSN (Online):1096-0325
Published Online:09 March 2009

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