Quantifying Microbial Competition on Leaves
The concept of competition occupies a central place in theories of ecology and evolution. Over the last three decades, extensive studies of the role of competition in regulating the population dynamics of various organisms have been accompanied by the development of a rich body of theory relating to competition (Diamond, 1978; Grime, 1979; Tilman, 1982; Roughgarden, 1983). However, not all ecologists have accepted the supremacy of competition as a mechanism for regulating natural populations (Roughgarden, 1985; Connell, 1983; Connor and Simberloff, 1986; Goldberg and Barton, 1992). In response to the intense focus on competition by some ecologists, a vociferous debate has erupted about the significance of interspecific competition in natural communities (Lewin, 1983 a, Lewin, 1983 b). In recent years, researchers have provided strong evidence for the importance of disturbance, the physical environment, and extra-population movement (immigration and emigration) in determining the dynamics of specific populations (Dayton, 1971; Roughgarden, 1986). Today this debate continues, and the tension generated by the competing hypotheses has provided a fertile ground for both theory and experimentation.
KeywordsCompetitive Ability Reproductive Output Interaction Coefficient Relative Fitness Spore Production
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