A Continuum Formulation of the Ideal Free Distribution and Its Implications for Population Dynamics

Mrigesh Kshatriya, Chris Cosner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

The ideal free distribution is a description of how organisms would distribute themselves in space if they were free to move so as to maximize fitness. The standard formulation of the ideal free distribution envisions the environment as consisting of finitely many discrete habitats. In this paper, a version of the ideal free distribution is derived for the case where the environment is a continuum. The continuum formulation allows computation of average fitness at the population level by taking account of both local fitness and the spatial distribution of the population. An example shows that the average fitness may have a different form than the local fitness; in particular, if local fitness is described by a logistic equation at each location, the average fitness may obey the θ-logistic equation of F. J. Ayala et al. (1973, Theor. Popul. Biol. 4, 331-356). This gives a mechanistic derivation of the θ-logistic equation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-284
Number of pages8
JournalTheoretical Population Biology
Volume61
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'A Continuum Formulation of the Ideal Free Distribution and Its Implications for Population Dynamics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this