Computer simulations of sympatric speciation in a simple food web

Luz-Burgoa, K., Dell, Tony, and Moss de Oliveira, S. (2005) Computer simulations of sympatric speciation in a simple food web. Physical Review E (Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics), 72 (1). 011914.

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Galapagos finches, have motivated much theoretical research aimed at understanding the processes associated with the formation of the species. Inspired by them, in this paper we investigate the process of sympatric speciation in a simple food web model. For that we modify the individual-based Penna model that has been widely used to study aging as well as other evolutionary processes. Initially, our web consists of a primary food source and a single herbivore species that feeds on this resource. Subsequently we introduce a predator that feeds on the herbivore. In both instances we manipulate directly a basal resource distribution and monitor the changes in the populations. Sympatric speciation is obtained for the top species in both cases, and our results suggest that the speciation velocity depends on how far up, in the food chain, the focus population is feeding. Simulations are done with three different sexual imprintinglike mechanisms, in order to discuss adaptation by natural selection.

Item ID: 7021
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1550-2376
Date Deposited: 24 Mar 2010 22:46
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 100%
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