Does movement toward better environments always benefit a population?

Chris Cosner, Yuan Lou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


We study the effects of advection along environmental gradients on logistic reaction-diffusion models for population growth. The local population growth rate is assumed to be spatially inhomogeneous, and the advection is taken to be a multiple of the gradient of the local population growth rate. It is also assumed that the boundary acts as a reflecting barrier to the population. We show that the effects of such advection depend crucially on the shape of the habitat of the population: if the habitat is convex, the movement in the direction of the gradient of the growth rate is always beneficial to the population, while such advection could be harmful for certain non-convex habitats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)489-503
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Mathematical Analysis and Applications
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 15 2003


  • Advection
  • Diffusion
  • Heterogeneous environment
  • Population dynamics
  • Shape of habitat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analysis
  • Applied Mathematics


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