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The Frequency of Density Dependence in Insect Host-Parasitoid Systems

Peter D. Stiling
Ecology
Vol. 68, No. 4 (Aug., 1987), pp. 844-856
Published by: Wiley
DOI: 10.2307/1938356
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1938356
Page Count: 13
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The Frequency of Density Dependence in Insect Host-Parasitoid Systems
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Abstract

I examined case studies of density-related parasitism in insect host-parasitoid systems reported in the literature. For 171 examples, the frequency of density dependence was 25% (n = 43), of inverse density dependence 23% (n = 39), and of independence 52% (n = 89). This is a considerably lower frequency of density dependence than previously reported in other reviews (Lawton and McNeill 1979, Lessells 1985, but see Dempster 1983). Biological features of case histories gave few clues as to the expected frequency of density dependence. Such features included host order, life stage attacked, parasite group, native vs. introduced status of hosts or parasites, number of attacking parasitoid species, mobile vs. sedentary hosts, and monophagous vs. polyphagous hosts or parasitoids. Biotic and abiotic factors may, however, provide good reasons for a low overall frequency of density dependence.

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