Download the full-sized PDF of Dispersal data and the spread of invading organismsDownload the full-sized PDF



Permanent link (DOI):


Export to: EndNote  |  Zotero  |  Mendeley


This file is in the following communities:

Biological Sciences, Department of


This file is in the following collections:

Journal Articles (Biological Sciences)

Dispersal data and the spread of invading organisms Open Access


Author or creator
Kot, M.
Lewis, M. A.
van den Driessche, P.
Additional contributors
Biological invasions
Allee effect
Seed shadows
Integrodifference equations
Spatial models
Type of item
Journal Article (Published)
Models that describe the spread of invading organisms often assume that the dispersal distances of propagules are normally distributed. In contrast, measured dispersal curves are typically leptokurtic, not normal. In this paper, we consider a class of models, integrodifference equations, that directly incorporate detailed dispersal data as well as population growth dynamics. We provide explicit formulas for the speed of invasion for compensatory growth and for different choices of the propagule redistribution kernel and apply these formulas to the spread of D. pseudoobscura. We observe that: (1) the speed of invasion of a spreading population is extremely sensitive to the precise shape of the redistribution kernel and, in particular, to the tail of the distribution; (2) fat-tailed kernels can generate accelerating invasions rather than constant-speed travelling waves; (3) normal redistribution kernels (and by inference, many reaction-diffusion models) may grossly underestimate rates of spread of invading populations in comparison with models that incorporate more realistic leptokurtic distributions; and (4) the relative superiority of different redistribution kernels depends, in general, on the precise magnitude of the net reproductive rate. The addition of an Allee effect to an integrodifference equation may decrease the overall rate of spread. An Allee effect may also introduce a critical range; the population must surpass this spatial threshold in order to invade successfully. Fat-tailed kernels and Allee effects provide alternative explanations for the accelerating rates of spread observed for many invasions.
Date created
License information
© 1996 Ecological Society of America. This version of this article is open access and can be downloaded and shared. The original author(s) and source must be cited.
Citation for previous publication
Kot, M., Lewis, M.A., van den Driessche, P. (1996). Dispersal data and the spread of invading organisms. Ecology, 77(7), 2027-2042. DOI: 10.2307/2265698.
Link to related item

File Details

Date Uploaded
Date Modified
Audit Status
Audits have not yet been run on this file.
File format: pdf (Portable Document Format)
Mime type: application/pdf
File size: 3587202
Last modified: 2015:10:12 20:41:53-06:00
Filename: Ecology_77_1996_2027.pdf
Original checksum: cf2e8ce2af60a343278ca65a41da6777
Well formed: false
Valid: false
Status message: Invalid object number in cross-reference stream offset=3587167
File title: Dispersal Data and the Spread of Invading Organisms
File language: en
Activity of users you follow
User Activity Date