Predator-prey model deepens understanding of weather

A mathematical formula describing the population dynamics of prey animals such as gazelles and their predators has been adapted to model the relationship between cloud systems, rain and aerosols.

Rain depletes clouds, which grow again once the rain has ended in a similar way to predator and prey populations that expand and contract at the expense of one another.

Aerosols affect the cloud shape in the same way that availability of grass affects herd size.

This model could help scientists understand how human-produced aerosols affect rainfall patterns.

Read more at Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America