Role of depletion on the dynamics of a diffusing forager
Abstract
We study the dynamics of a starving random walk in general spatial dimension d. This model represents an idealized description for the fate of an unaware forager whose motion is not affected by the presence or absence of resources. The forager depletes its environment by consuming resources and dies if it wanders too long without finding food. In the exactly solvable case of one dimension, we explicitly derive the average lifetime of the walk and the distribution for the number of distinct sites visited by the walk at the instant of starvation. We also give a heuristic derivation for the averages of these two quantities. We tackle the complex but ecologically relevant case of two dimensions by an approximation in which the depleted zone is assumed to always be circular and which grows incrementally each time the walk reaches the edge of this zone. Within this framework, we derive a lower bound for the scaling of the average lifetime and number of distinct sites visited at starvation. We also determine the asymptotic distribution of the number of distinct sites visited at starvation. Finally, we solve the case of high spatial dimensions within a meanfield approach.
 Publication:

Journal of Physics A Mathematical General
 Pub Date:
 September 2016
 DOI:
 10.1088/17518113/49/39/394003
 arXiv:
 arXiv:1605.00892
 Bibcode:
 2016JPhA...49M4003B
 Keywords:

 Condensed Matter  Statistical Mechanics
 EPrint:
 J. Phys. A: Math. Theor. 49 (2016) 394003