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Download paper Released 2023-08-12

The population dynamic life histories of the birds and mammals of the world

On the natural selection and population dynamic importance of life history estimates

With life history traits determining the natural selection fittnesses of individuals and growth of populations, estimates of their variation are essential to advance evolutionary theory and ecological management during times of global change. As quantitative predictions improve with the completeness of models, and as data are usually incomplete or missing for most species, I use published data and interspecific allometric extrapolations to estimate complete population dynamic life history models for birds and mammals with known body masses. This constructs models for 11,188 species of birds and 4,937 species of mammals, covering 27 life history and ecological traits per species. The estimates are used to illustrate natural selection mechanisms and explain a diverse range of population dynamic trajectories by the inclusion of population dynamic regulation. This provides a first step towards the construction of freely accessible and ready-to-use online population dynamic simulations covering all species of birds and mammals.