Hopf and torus bifurcations, torus destruction and chaos in population biology

N. Stollenwerk, PF Sommer, B.W. Kooi, L. Mateus, P. Ghaffari, M Aguiar

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    One of the simplest population biological models displaying a Hopf bifurcation is the Rosenzweig–MacArthur model with Holling type II response function as essential ingredient. In seasonally forced versions the fixed point on one side of the Hopf bifurcation becomes a limit cycle and the Hopf limit cycle on the other hand becomes a torus, hence the Hopf bifurcation becomes a torus bifurcation, and via torus destruction by further increasing relevant parameters can follow deterministic chaos. We investigate this route to chaos also in view of stochastic versions, since in real world systems only such stochastic processes would be observed. However, the Holling type II response function is not directly related to a transition from one to another population class which would allow a stochastic version straight away. Instead, a time scale separation argument leads from a more complex model to the simple 2 dimensional Rosenzweig– MacArthur model, via additional classes of food handling and predators searching for prey. This extended model allows a stochastic generalization with the stochastic version of aHopf bifurcation, and ultimately also with additional seasonality allowing a torus bifurcation under stochasticity. Our study shows that the torus destruction into chaos with positive Lyapunov exponents can occur in parameter regions where also the time scale separation and hence stochastic versions of the model are possible. The chaotic motion is observed inside Arnol’d tongues of rational ratio of the forcing frequency and the eigenfrequency of the unforced Hopf limit cycle. Such torus bifurcations and torus destruction into chaos are also observed in other population biological systems, and were for example found in extended multi-strain epidemiological models on dengue fever. To understand such dynamical scenarios better also under noise the present low dimensional system can serve as a good study case.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)91-99
    Number of pages9
    JournalEcological Complexity
    Issue numberJune
    Publication statusPublished - 2017


    • Multi-strain dengue models, Torus bifurcation, Stochastic systems, Stoichiometric formulation, Deterministic chaos Lyapunov exponents


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