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On competition and temporal variation in temperate freshwater fish populations
Persson, L.; Johansson, L. (1992). On competition and temporal variation in temperate freshwater fish populations. Neth. J. Zool. 42(2-3): 304-322
In: Netherlands Journal of Zoology. E.J. Brill: Leiden. ISSN 0028-2960, more
Peer reviewed article  

Also published as
  • Persson, L.; Johansson, L. (1992). On competition and temporal variation in temperate freshwater fish populations, in: Osse, J.W.M. et al. (Ed.) The Threatened World of Fish: Proceedings of the 7th International Ichthyology Congress, The Hague (The Netherlands), August 26-30, 1991. 42(2-3): pp. 304-322, more

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  • Persson, L.
  • Johansson, L.

    Recruitment in fish populations is charaterized by a high temporal variability and a considerablestochasticity. It has therefore been suggested that fish population should be likely candidates for coexistence based on the storage mechanism. Many characteristics of fish populations such as high variability in year class strength and mortality biased towards smaller (younger) induviduals are also elements that make coexistence based on the storage mechanism likely. At the same time, considerable experimental evidence usually associated with deterministic competition models, such as density dependence in induvidual growth rates, desity dependence in populations densities, and competition-related niche dynamics, is also present. We use temporal variation in temperature, an environmental variable involving both a stochastic and a regular (seasonal) component, to illustrate how both coexistence based on a storage mechanism and patterns expected from deterministic competition models may co-occur. Temperature is as important in fish as in other poikilothermic organisms, since the carrying capacity of the population will vary with temperature through the latter's effect on the metabolic requirements of individuals. Seasonal variation in temperature will, through its effect on metabolic demands, also cause favourable periods to alternate with unfavourable periods, i.e. environmental effects covary with competition effects as assumed in lottery models. We suggest that seasonal variation in temperature will promote coexistence and at the same time allow competition to be regular event with significant evolutionary potential. Experimental and field evidence that suppotrs the idea of a seasonal variation in resourse limitation stongly coupled to temperature is provided.

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