A comparison of life-history strategies and environmental effects upon populations of Armadillidium vulgare in three habitats

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Individual populations of Armadillidium vulgare in a Chinese tallow forest, a red oak forest, and in a Baccharis-grassland area were compared for one year. Time-specific life tables were prepared for each population. R0 for isopods in the tallow, oak, and Baccharis was 7.59, 7.46, and 16.63 respectively. Mean generation time (T) was 245 days, 337 days, and 532 days. Values of r/female/50 days were .01020, .00669, and .00617. Isopods in the Baccharis were found to have significantly extended survivorship in comparison to isopods in the other two habitats. Densities in the Baccharis were lower and fluctuated less than densities in the tallow and oak forests. Densities in oak forest were higher than those in the tallow and Baccharis areas. Densities in the tallow and oak forests increased sharply during spring and summer and declined throughout the winter. Density fluctuations were found to be related to changes in mean monthly temperature within the tallow and oak forests. Reproductive capacity of females in all three areas increased directly with length and did not differ significantly between habitats.