Quantifying and comparing patterns of dynamical ecological systems requires averaging over measurable quantities. For example, to infer variation in movement and behavior, metrics such as step length and velocity are averaged over large ensembles. Yet, in nonergodic systems, such averaging is inconsistent; thus, identifying ergodicity breaking is essential in ecology. Using rich, high-resolution, movement data sets (greater than 7×107 localizations) from 70 individuals and continuous-time random walk modeling, we find subdiffusive behavior and ergodicity breaking in the localized movement of three species of avian predators. Small-scale, within-patch movement was found to be qualitatively different, not inferrable and separated from large-scale interpatch movement. Local search is characterized by long, power-law-distributed waiting times with a diverging mean, giving rise to ergodicity breaking in the form of considerable variability uniquely observed at this scale. This implies that wild animal movement is scale specific, with no typical waiting time at the local scale.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
For fieldwork and technical assistance, we thank Y. Bartan, A. Levi, S. Margalit, R. Shaish, G. Rozman, and other members of the Movement Ecology Lab and the Minerva Center for Movement Ecology. We also thank R. Metzler for useful comments. O. V. and M. A. acknowledge support from the ISF Grant No. 531/20. ATLAS development, maintenance, and studies have been supported by the Minerva Center for Movement Ecology, the Minerva Foundation, and ISF Grants No. 965/15 and No. 1919/19 to R.N and S. T.; research on black-winged kites was also supported by JNF/KKL Grant No. 60-01-221-18. R. N. also acknowledges support from Adelina and Massimo Della Pergola Chair of Life Sciences.
© 2022 authors. Published by the American Physical Society.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (all)