WITH regard to Prof. Volterra's interesting article, “Fluctuations in the Abundance of a Species considered Mathematically,” in NATURE of October 16, page 558, I may be permitted to point to certain prior publications on the subject, of which Prof. Volterra seems to be unaware. The general theory as well as a number of special cases have been set forth in “Elements of Physical Biology” (published by Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, 1925), in which work a considerable number of references to the journal literature are given. Among other things Prof. Volterra's diagram “Fig. 2” will be found on page go of the book cited; the expression for the period of isochronous small oscillations in the case of two species is also found on the same page. Prof. Volterra refers to certain applications of his analysis to problems of sea fisheries, to a passage in Darwin's “Origin of Species,” to extinction of species, to pathogenic germs, and to parasitology. An application to sea fisheries is found in the book cited on page 95; to a passage in Herbert Spencer on page 61; to the extinction of species on pages 94, 95; to pathogenic germs on pages 77, 79, 147 et seq.; to parasitology on page 83.

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