[PAST EVENT] Mathematics Colloquium and EXTREEMS-QED Lecture: Laura Storch (William & Mary)
Access & Features
- Open to the public
Speaker: Laura Storch (William & Mary)
Title: Chaos in ecology: An examination of nonlinear population dynamics in diffusive and advective dispersal environments
Abstract: Chaotic and nonlinear dynamical systems theory is underutilized in the ecological literature, despite the direct detection of chaotic dynamics in myriad and diverse ecological systems over the last few decades. Here, we add to the chaotic ecological literature by mapping the dynamics of two chaotic population models: one population in a diffusive dispersal environment (symmetric dispersal) and one population in an advective dispersal environment (asymmetric dispersal). We find that symmetric diffusive dispersal can serve to dampen chaotic dynamics in a population, while weak asymmetric dispersal can serve to destabilize population dynamics. We additionally find that the effects of disturbance on a population are location-dependent. These simple models display a wide array of complex dynamics and sensitivity to both disturbance and changes in system parameters. It will be essential to better understand the dynamics of chaotic populations and their reaction to change if we wish to manage and preserve them in the face of a globally shifting climate.