Poster Presentation 64th International Conference of the Wildlife Disease Association 2015

Epidemiological and evolutionary implications of seasonal birth pulses in wild mammals (#181)

Olivier Restif 1 , Alison J Peel , Juliet R C Pulliam , Angela D Lewis , Raina K Plowright , Thomas J O'Shea , David T S Hayman , James L N Wood , Colleen T Webb
  1. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, CAMBRIDGESHIRE, United Kingdom

Seasonal birth pulses are frequently observed in wildlife and are expected to affect the dynamics of infectious diseases within populations. We recently showed that the range of birth pulse shapes observed across mammalian species could have a strong impact on the persistence of diseases, as measured by the critical community size1. Here I present the predictions from our model and investigate the potential consequences of seasonal birth pulses for the evolution of virulence in pathogens. I then discuss the implications for the evolution of life history traits in host species.

  1. Peel, A., J. Pulliam, A. Luis, R. Plowright, T. O'Shea, D. Hayman, J. Wood, C. Webb and O. Restif (2014). "The effect of seasonal birth pulses on pathogen persistence in wild mammal populations." Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 281(1786): 20132962.