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Noise colour and the risk of population extinctions

Ripa, J. LU and Lundberg, P. LU (1996) In Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences 263(1377). p.1751-1753
Abstract
A recurrent problem in ecology and conservation biology is to estimate the risk of population extinctions. Extinction probabilities are not only imperative for conservation and management, but may also elucidate basic mechanisms of the regulation of natural populations. The usual way of modelling stochastic influence on population dynamics has been to assume that the external noise is uncorrelated. This means that each and every randomly drawn noise value is totally independent on previous ones. This is what is generally called 'white' noise. However, the noise itself can be temporally autocorrelated. That is, the values of the random numbers used in the noise process will depend on previous ones. Here we show that the autocorrelation, or... (More)
A recurrent problem in ecology and conservation biology is to estimate the risk of population extinctions. Extinction probabilities are not only imperative for conservation and management, but may also elucidate basic mechanisms of the regulation of natural populations. The usual way of modelling stochastic influence on population dynamics has been to assume that the external noise is uncorrelated. This means that each and every randomly drawn noise value is totally independent on previous ones. This is what is generally called 'white' noise. However, the noise itself can be temporally autocorrelated. That is, the values of the random numbers used in the noise process will depend on previous ones. Here we show that the autocorrelation, or colour, of the external noise assumed to influence population dynamics strongly modifies estimated extinction probabilities. For positively autocorrelated ('red') noise, the risk of extinction clearly decreases the stronger the autocorrelation is. Negatively autocorrelated ('blue') noise is more ambiguously related to extinction probability. Thus, the commonly assumed white noise in population modelling will severely bias population extinction risk estimates. Moreover, the extinction probability estimates are also significantly dependent on model structure which calls for a cautious use of traditional discrete-time models. (Less)
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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
article, ecology, natural population, nonhuman, population dynamics, population model, priority journal, white noise, utdöenderisk, variabel miljö, stokastisk
in
Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences
volume
263
issue
1377
pages
3 pages
publisher
Royal Society
external identifiers
  • Scopus:0030411203
ISSN
1471-2954
DOI
10.1098/rspb.1996.0256
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
fd6bb773-ebda-42a6-9020-83b10f4e2b09
date added to LUP
2016-08-23 15:48:15
date last changed
2016-09-01 13:20:00
@misc{fd6bb773-ebda-42a6-9020-83b10f4e2b09,
  abstract     = {A recurrent problem in ecology and conservation biology is to estimate the risk of population extinctions. Extinction probabilities are not only imperative for conservation and management, but may also elucidate basic mechanisms of the regulation of natural populations. The usual way of modelling stochastic influence on population dynamics has been to assume that the external noise is uncorrelated. This means that each and every randomly drawn noise value is totally independent on previous ones. This is what is generally called 'white' noise. However, the noise itself can be temporally autocorrelated. That is, the values of the random numbers used in the noise process will depend on previous ones. Here we show that the autocorrelation, or colour, of the external noise assumed to influence population dynamics strongly modifies estimated extinction probabilities. For positively autocorrelated ('red') noise, the risk of extinction clearly decreases the stronger the autocorrelation is. Negatively autocorrelated ('blue') noise is more ambiguously related to extinction probability. Thus, the commonly assumed white noise in population modelling will severely bias population extinction risk estimates. Moreover, the extinction probability estimates are also significantly dependent on model structure which calls for a cautious use of traditional discrete-time models.},
  author       = {Ripa, J. and Lundberg, P.},
  issn         = {1471-2954},
  keyword      = {article,ecology,natural population,nonhuman,population dynamics,population model,priority journal,white noise,utdöenderisk, variabel miljö, stokastisk},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {08},
  number       = {1377},
  pages        = {1751--1753},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0xc772fe8)},
  series       = {Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences},
  title        = {Noise colour and the risk of population extinctions},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.1996.0256},
  volume       = {263},
  year         = {1996},
}