Population biology

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The population biology is a branch of ecology and deals with the structure and development of animal , plant and microbial populations .

Important areas are population ecology and population genetics . Population ecology deals, among other things, with the influence of the environment on size, vitality, age structure and gender distribution. Among other things, population genetics investigates how genes are passed on to the next generation and exchanged between the individual populations of a species.

In many cases, other specialist areas are also included in population biology, such as biogeography , especially through the specialty of island biogeography and phylogeography (description of the phylogenetic and geographical origin of individual genetic lines). In addition, the term is also used in terms of content in evolutionary ecology , especially if genetic and evolutionary findings are integrated.

Population biology is not only of purely scientific interest; its findings also find numerous practical applications, especially in species protection .


  • Karin Amler (Ed.): Islanding of habitats. Population Biology in Conservation Practice. Ulmer, Stuttgart 1999, ISBN 3-8001-3516-7 .
  • Alan Hasting: Population Biology. Concepts and Models. Springer, New York 1997, ISBN 0-387-94862-7 .