Multiple resource limitation: Non-equilibrium coexistence of species in a competition model using a synthesizing unit.

P.S. Dutta, B.W. Kooi, U. Feudel

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

During the last two decades, the simple view of resource limitation by a single resource has been changed due to the realization that co-limitation by multiple resources is often an important determinant of species growth. Hence, the multiple resource limitation hypothesis needs to be taken into account, when communities of species competing for resources are considered. We present a multiple species–multiple resource competition model which is based on the concept of synthesizing unit to formulate the growth rates of species competing for interactive essential resources. Using this model, we demonstrate that a more mechanistic explanation of interactive effects of co-limitation may lead to the known complex dynamics including nonequilibrium states as oscillations and chaos. We compare our findings with earlier investigations on biological mechanisms that can predict the outcome of multispecies competition. Moreover, we show that this model yields a periodic state where more species than limiting complementary resources can coexist (supersaturation) in a homogeneous environment. We identify two novel mechanisms, how such a state can emerge: a transcritical bifurcation of a limit cycle and a transition from a heteroclinic cycle. Furthermore, we demonstrate the robustness of the phenomenon of supersaturation when the environmental conditions are varied.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)407-421
JournalTheoretical Ecology
Volume7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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