Lecture 5. Exponential and Logistic Growth

Course: Quantitative Population Ecology
Dept. of Entomology, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

©Alexei Sharov

Self-reproduction is the main feature of all living organisms. This is what distinguishes them from non-living things. Any model of population dynamics include reproduction. We will discuss two most important models of population growth based on reproduction of organisms: exponential and logistic models.

Exponential and logistic models help to solve different kinds of problems in ecology, here are some examples:

  1. How long will it take for a population to grow to a specific size?
  2. What will be population size after n years (or generations)?
  3. How long the population can survive at non-favorable conditions?
Additional external links:

Logistic model (St. Olaf College, MN)

Alexei Sharov 1/11/96