06 December 2009


Interspecific competition is the use of a limited resource by one species that reduces the availability of that resource by other species. In 1925 and 1926, two mathematicians, Lotka and Volterra, predicted that in this situation, one species would reach its carrying capacity at the total exclusion on the other species in that resource. All a species needs is a slight competitive advantage to succeed: the chance of two species' being equal is mathematically tiny. The result is A PARTITIONING OF RESOURCES BY BIRDS. Study after study has confirmed competitive exclusion.

Another interesting aspect of competition is the study of habitat utilization by birds. You should be familiar with the terms niche, habitat, and empty niche. Do you think that the term empty niche is a controdiction in terms? How do the terms possible (fundamental) and actual (realized) niche suit you?

Northern Shrike

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