Population Dynamics: Growing to Extremes

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Science  22 Jul 2005:
Vol. 309, Issue 5734, pp. 567-568
DOI: 10.1126/science.1116268

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In their Perspective, Reynolds and Freckleton describe an analysis by Sibly et al. of data from 1780 wild populations of animals and discover that most undergo steep reductions in rate of growth much earlier in their trajectories than expected. This implies that density dependence, the holy grail of ecology, acts much sooner to limit populations than previously expected.