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Lucy to LanguageThe Benchmark Papers$
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R. I. M. Dunbar, Clive Gamble, and J. A. J. Gowlett

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199652594

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199652594.001.0001

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Time as an Ecological Constraint1

Time as an Ecological Constraint1

(p.213) 10 Time as an Ecological Constraint1
Lucy to Language

R.I.M. Dunbar

A.H. Korstjens

Julia Lehmann

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the role of time as a determinant of animal survival or reproduction in a given habitat, mainly by limiting an animal's foraging ability. More specifically, it analyses the time constraints under which animals labour, and how these are affected by climate and habitat quality. The chapter proposes a linear programming approach to time budgets that attempts to explain both a species' ability to survive in a particular habitat and the constraints on its social and demographic arrangements, including group size, by taking into consideration a number of additional dimensions such as life history and predation risk. Because these models are climate-driven, they can also be used to elucidate both the selection pressures that have acted on a particular taxonomic lineage during its evolutionary history and its capacity to cope with future climate change.

Keywords:   time, survival, reproduction, foraging, animals, climate, habitat quality, group size, predation risk, climate change

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