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Enrichment and ecosystem stability: effect of toxic food

Roy, S. and Chattopadhyay, J. (2007) Enrichment and ecosystem stability: effect of toxic food. Biosystems, 90 (1). pp. 151-160. ISSN 0303-2647

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.biosystems.2006.07.009

Abstract/Summary

Enrichment in resource availability theoretically destabilizes predator–prey dynamics (the paradox of enrichment). However, a minor change in the resource stoichiometry may make a prey toxic for the predator, and the presence of toxic prey affects the dynamics significantly. Here, theoretically we explore how, at increased carrying capacity, a toxic prey affects the oscillation or destabilization of predator–prey dynamics, and how its presence influences the growth of the predator as well as that of a palatable prey. Mathematical analysis determines the bounds on the food toxicity that allow the coexistence of a predator along with a palatable and a toxic prey. The overall results demonstrate that toxic food counteracts oscillation (destabilization) arising from enrichment of resource availability. Moreover, our results show that, at increased resource availability, toxic food that acts as a source of extra mortality may increase the abundance of the predator as well as that of the palatable prey.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Science > School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science > Department of Geography and Environmental Science
ID Code:36883
Publisher:Elsevier

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