Simulation of cotton rat population dynamics and response to rodenticide applications in Florida sugarcane

Ecological Modelling
By: , and 

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Abstract

Alternative deterministic simulation models were compared to test the management consequences of present uncertainty about the degree of density dependence involved in cotton rat population cycles in southern Florida sugarcane fields. Efficacy of rodenticide applied in different months was explored under six different scenarios of density dependence and independence in two population parameters: fecundity and juvenile survival. Output from the six models differed considerably in the number of rats produced, but was remarkably consistent in the most effective months to apply rodenticide. Since models without density-dependent fecundity were inherently unstable and an inverse relationship between fecundity and population size is apparent in field data, such a population-growth mechanism seems possible in Florida sugarcane fields. The model in which fecundity was density-dependent at all times produced rat densities closest to field data. Output from this model was most sensitive to changes in the amount litter size declines as population size increases. Field tests are necessary to validate the general agreement among the models about the most effective months to apply rodenticide.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Simulation of cotton rat population dynamics and response to rodenticide applications in Florida sugarcane
Series title Ecological Modelling
DOI 10.1016/0304-3800(90)90049-M
Volume 50
Issue 1-3
Year Published 1990
Language English
Publisher Elsevier Science
Publisher location Amsterdam
Description 27 p.
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title Ecological Modelling
First page 177
Last page 203
Country United States
State Florida