Hunting regulations aim to keep trophy hunting sustainable. Yet most regulations fall short of this aim and trophy size is becoming shorter over time in most hunted populations, such as Bighorn sheep, Impala, Mouflon, and Sable antelope. This might be due to ignoring the speed of trophy growth when deciding on hunting regulations.
Guest post from Rocío Pozo:
Imagine you are a trophy hunter. The red deer hunting season has just opened and you are ready to go out and get those trophies you have been waiting for. What would be the first question you would ask yourself? Exactly! What is the hunting quota?
The right offspring sex can increase the number of grandchildren. Theory predicts which offspring sex is optimal depending on the mother’s condition, but mothers in natural populations do not behave according to theoretical predictions. We explain the reason for the mismatch and provide more accurate predictions.
The age at which we die determines how fast our population grows. Recent work shows how to predict the growth rate of a population from the age-at-death distribution.
The body size of an animal influences its survival, fertility, and mating chances. In addition, who is reproducing and with whom determines how a species evolves. Despite the important fact that body size and mating decisions shape the population and the course of evolution, there have been limited methods so far to study how both together affect population growth.
Female animals who prefer healthy and fit partners are having more and fitter descendants. A gene that brings forth such mating preferences is going to spread quickly. This gene can even forward the split-up of one species into two.