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Agent-based simulations of interactions between duck population, farming decisions and leasing of hunting rights in the Camargue (Southern France)

Mathevet R., Bousquet F., Le Page C., Antona M.. 2003. Ecological Modelling, 165 (2-3) : p. 107-126.

DOI: 10.1016/S0304-3800(03)00098-X

Understanding and predicting how bird populations and land cover respond to natural and anthropogenic changes is a major challenge for environmental planning. Multi-agent modelling enables horizontal relationships (spatial configurations) and vertical relationships (socio-economic organisation) to be integrated. GEMACE is a multi-agent model for simulating farming-hunting-duck interactions in the Camargue (Southern France). For an archetypal region, we simulated land-use conversion and ecological change in space and time resulting from the interaction between environment and human drivers. A wintering duck population is simulated and distributed heterogeneously in its habitats. The duck population is affected by various environmental factors such as land-use changes, wetland management, hunting harvest, and disturbance. Land-use decisions are made at farmland level by farmers and hunting managers. Important biophysical drivers are water and salt through land relief, land-use history, infrastructure, spatial neighbourhood, and current land use. Important human drivers are the economic conditions of the world agricultural market and land-use strategy. Through three scenario runs, we discuss the implications that can be drawn from this modelling application with regard to the viability of a spatial conservation management alternative and multi-field research on sustainable development.

Mots-clés : oiseau aquatique; canard; chasse; utilisation des terres; rizière; oryza; modèle de simulation; zone humide; france; système multiagents

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