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Artificial Life

Summer 1997, Vol. 3, No. 3, Pages 165-190
(doi: 10.1162/artl.1997.3.3.165)
© 1997 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Ecology of Echo
Article PDF (3.2 MB)

Echo is a generic ecosystem model in which evolving agents are situated in a resource-limited environment. The Echo model is described, and the behavior of Echo is evaluated on two well-studied measures of ecological diversity: relative species abundance and the species-area scaling relation. In simulation experiments, these measures are used to compare the behavior of Echo with that of a neutral model, in which selection on agent genotypes is random. These simulations show that the evolutionary component of Echo makes a significant contribution to its behavior and that Echo shows good qualitative agreement with naturally occurring species abundance distributions and species-area scaling relations.