Now listen to part of a lecture on this topic in a biology class.
Imagine there's a group of mice living in a large field, and owls living nearby.
Now, owls eat mice¡ªso the number of mice there are at any given time depends upon the number of owls in the area...
um, because the more owls there are, the more mice get eaten, right?
Now, imagine one year,
there are more owls than usual.
Since there are more owls in the area to eat the mice,
what do you think will happen to the number of mice?
As you can imagine,
the number would drop... there'd be fewer mice.
As far as the other factor...
um, we can use rabbits to help understand this one.
Imagine a population of rabbits living in an area...
These rabbits usually start having their young at the end of winter,
after the cold winter weather is gone,
and they keep reproducing until the following winter, when they will stop again while the cold winter weather lasts.
But let's say this year, the winter season is very short...
and it uh, you know, starts getting warm much earlier than usual.
Since winter this year is so short,
the rabbits can start reproducing much earlier.
That means the rabbits in that area will have at least one extra reproductive cycle,
so, of course, one extra litter of baby rabbits.
So the number of rabbits in that area would increase a lot.