A population is typically defined as a group of interbreeding individuals of the same species living within a defined area. The key to this definition is that individuals within a population must, at the very least, have the potential to interbreed. Thus, dispersal potential can drive the size of a population. Many wide-ranging species, for example migratory birds, have huge populations that can span thousands of square kilometers. More stationary species, for example, bog lemmings, will have more restricted population sizes where the entire population exists within a small peat bog.
Next Page: Meta-population, natural and derived
Bob Unnasch, Ph.D.
Sound Science LLC