What do we do?
We work on linking mathematics, statistics and demography to understand what shapes demographic rates and spatial processes in wild populations. We are particularly interested in understanding how age, heterogeneity and environmental factors affect mortality and fertility in wild populations, and how these may determine age-specific demographic rates, ageing rates, and population growth.
Our projects include the development and application of hierarchical Bayesian models to estimate age-specific demographic rates when age is unknown (see R package BaSTA; Colchero & Clark 2012, Colchero et al. 2012). We have extended this framework to understand mortality in populations where one or both sexes disperse (Barthold et al. 2016a,b, Colchero et al. 2016), and to explore the combined effect of age and size on mortality of indeterminate growers (Colchero and Schaible 2014, Schaible et al. in progress).
We are also interested on understanding animal population dynamics in stochastic environments. Our projects include the development of Bayesian inference of population dynamics when count data are incomplete, and how these dynamics are affected by the environment and management strategies (Colchero et al. 2009; Zubillaga et al. 2014; Koons et al. 2015). They also include mathematical derivations of the long-term stochastic population growth rate and its sensitivities to demographic rates (Colchero et al. 2019)