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Simulating the consequences of behavioural variation among African antelope populations under a changing climate and different land management scenarios

Simulating the consequences of behavioural variation among African antelope populations under a changing climate and different land management scenarios
Simulating the consequences of behavioural variation among African antelope populations under a changing climate and different land management scenarios
Although numerous predictions have been developed regarding climate change, many current tools and methods represent a reductionist approach and are insufficient to fully assess the ecological impact of climate change, and the adaptive capacity of species to mitigate these impacts. A complex systems approach is required: assessing the impacts of climate change on species is flawed without consideration of variation in behaviour and social organisation. The aim of this study is to evaluate the utility of using simulations to understand how the full range of behavioural variation, and social organisation, contributes to the adaptive capacity of species to respond to climate change. A high-resolution agent-based model was developed to simulate behavioural variation within a community of antelope species in Mokala National Park, South Africa, subject to different climate change scenarios. The model was then extended to evaluate and compare the effectiveness of two separate management interventions (habitat management and park expansion), in conserving the community under climate change. Comparisons were based on individuals’ energy levels and whether there were selection pressures for specific behaviour or social groups. The results suggest both types of intervention show promise for mitigation of climate change effects but both schemes also selected for specific behaviour types and social groups. This may impact on populations ability to adapt to change and may affect the social cohesion of these populations.
University of Southampton
Elliott, Graham, John
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Elliott, Graham, John
4f2748d6-a80a-4391-8934-d5f703cb6944
Osborne, Patrick
c4d4261d-557c-4179-a24e-cdd7a98fb2b8
Doncaster, C. Patrick
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Elliott, Graham, John (2022) Simulating the consequences of behavioural variation among African antelope populations under a changing climate and different land management scenarios. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 182pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Although numerous predictions have been developed regarding climate change, many current tools and methods represent a reductionist approach and are insufficient to fully assess the ecological impact of climate change, and the adaptive capacity of species to mitigate these impacts. A complex systems approach is required: assessing the impacts of climate change on species is flawed without consideration of variation in behaviour and social organisation. The aim of this study is to evaluate the utility of using simulations to understand how the full range of behavioural variation, and social organisation, contributes to the adaptive capacity of species to respond to climate change. A high-resolution agent-based model was developed to simulate behavioural variation within a community of antelope species in Mokala National Park, South Africa, subject to different climate change scenarios. The model was then extended to evaluate and compare the effectiveness of two separate management interventions (habitat management and park expansion), in conserving the community under climate change. Comparisons were based on individuals’ energy levels and whether there were selection pressures for specific behaviour or social groups. The results suggest both types of intervention show promise for mitigation of climate change effects but both schemes also selected for specific behaviour types and social groups. This may impact on populations ability to adapt to change and may affect the social cohesion of these populations.

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Published date: 2022

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 455623
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/455623
PURE UUID: 24fbdfb9-f531-4bc0-8390-0c045d0a784e
ORCID for Patrick Osborne: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-8919-5710

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 29 Mar 2022 16:45
Last modified: 23 Jul 2022 01:54

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Contributors

Author: Graham, John Elliott
Thesis advisor: Patrick Osborne ORCID iD
Thesis advisor: C. Patrick Doncaster

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