Fluctuation periodicity, generation separation, and the expression of larval competition

William Gurney, R.M. Nisbet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

116 Citations (Scopus)


A suite of models has been formulated to investigate the dynamic consequences of the various routes by which uniform larval competition for food can find demographic expression. It is found that while delayed expression through the vital rates of later age classes gives rise to limit cycles containing multiple overlapping generations, immediate expression via changes in the death or growth rates of the larvae themselves leads to self-sustaining single generation limit cycles. When immediate expression of competition is combined with high adult fecundity and short reproductive lifespan the amplitude of the single generation cycles is so large that they constitute a series of evenly spaced discrete generations, which is maintained indefinitely even in the absence of external cues.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-180
Number of pages31
JournalTheoretical Population Biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1985


  • larval competition
  • demographic expression
  • demographic cycles


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