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The Canadian lynx and snowshoe hare pelt data by the Hudson Bay Company did not fit the classical predator-prey theory. Rather than following the peak density of the hare, that of the lynx leads it, creating the hares-eat-lynx (HEL) paradox. Although trappers were suspected to play a role, no mathematical model has ever demonstrated the HEL effect. Here we show that the long-held assumption that the pelt number is a proxy of the wild populations is false and that when the data are modeled by the harvest rates by the trappers, the problem is finally resolved: both the HEL paradox and the classical theory are unified in our mechanistic hare-lynx-competitor-trapper (HLCT) model where competitor stands for all predators of the hares other than the lynx. The result is obtained by systematically fitting the data to various models using Newton's inverse problem method. Main findings of this study include: the prey-eats-predator paradox in kills by an intraguild top-predator can occur if the top-predator prefers the predator to the prey; the benchmark HLCT model is more sensitive to all lynx-trapper interactions than to the respective hare-trapper interactions; the Hudson Bay Company's hare pelt number maybe under-reported; and, the most intriguing of all, the trappers did not interfere in each other's trapping activities.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Acta biotheoretica
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The genus Lepus, in the family Leporidae, order LAGOMORPHA. Hares are born above ground, fully furred, and with their eyes and ears open. In contrast with RABBITS, hares have 24 chromosome pairs.
An order of small mammals comprising two families, Ochotonidae (pikas) and Leporidae (RABBITS and HARES). Head and body length ranges from about 125 mm to 750 mm. Hares and rabbits have a short tail, and the pikas lack a tail. Rabbits are born furless and with both eyes and ears closed. HARES are born fully haired with eyes and ears open. All are vegetarians. (From Nowak, Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th ed, p539-41)
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Instructional use of examples or cases to teach using problem-solving skills and critical thinking.
A genus in the family FELIDAE comprising felines with long legs, ear tufts, and a short tail.