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Publication Information

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Title: Dynamical role of predators in population cycles of a forest insect: an experimental test.

Author: Turchin, P.; Taylor, A.D.; Reeve, J.D.;

Date: 1999

Source: Science 285: 1068-1071

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: Population cycles occur frequently in forest insects.Time-series analysis of fluctuations in one such insect, the southern pine beetle (Dendroctonus frontalis), suggests that beetle dynamics are dominated by an ecological process acting in a delayed density-dependent manner.The hypothesis that delayed density-dependence in this insect results from its interaction with predators was tested with a long-term predator-exclusion experiment. Predator-imposed mortality was negligible during the increase phase, grew during the year of peak population, and reached a maximum during the period of population decline.The delayed nature of the impact of predation suggests that predation is an important process that contributes significantly to southern pine beetle oscillations.

Keywords: population cycles, bark beetles, Dendroctonus frontalis, Thanasimus dubius

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Turchin, P.; Taylor, A.D.; Reeve, J.D. 1999. Dynamical role of predators in population cycles of a forest insect: an experimental test. Science 285: 1068-1071


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