What are K-selected species?

1 Answer
May 9, 2016

K-selected species are species that reduce the number of offspring produced in order to increase the quality of offspring produced.

Explanation:

K-selected species are species that reduce the number of offspring produced in order to increase the quality of offspring produced. This is in contrast to r-selected species or species that produce a large number of offspring at a lower quality.

K-selected species invest in their offspring rather than produce a larger number of individuals that are minimally cared for or not cared for at all. Large body size and longer life span are characteristic of k-selected species.

The idea is that species in environments that are close or at equilibrium use this strategy whereas r-selected species are opportunists. The environment is variable and risky, thus producing more offspring and investing less in them is advantageous.

https://www.gvsu.edu/rmsc/interchange/2013-february-connections-718.htm

R/k selection has been replaced by the understanding that species exhibit some traits that are characteristic of r-selected species and other traits more characteristic of k-selected species. The reality is that organisms fall on a continuum.

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