Dynamics in resource-consumer models

TYPEStatistical & Bio Seminar
Speaker:Itay Dalmedigos
Time:14:30 - 15:30
Location:Lidow Nathan Rosen (300)

Different species that coexist in an ecosystem may compete over resources, such as sunlight or nutrients. Theoretical models of resource competition often display simple dynamics that reach fixed points. This has important consequences, in particular that the number of coexisting species can't be larger than the number of resources, a result known as "competitive exclusion".

We study models of ecosystems with many species and resources, using tools from statistical mechanics and random matrix theory. We show that in conditions where more species can coexist then resources, popular models are in fact fine-tuned, and the system's dynamics will typically be chaotic. This allows many more species to coexist in these dynamically-fluctuating states.