Behavior has an understated role in the genesis of complex ecologies. Discussion of ecological regulation describes the phenomenon in terms of coupled feedbacks which have been connected by Harvey (2004) to rein control as introduced by Clynes (1969). These descriptions have motivated the question of how communities that instantiate such feedbacks can evolve in the first place, especially with respect to global regulatory effects such as those supposed in Lovelock and Margulis’ Gaia theory (1974). While Gaian regulation is not incompatible with evolution, it appears there are intermediate steps that are necessary for its establishment, and likely the establishment of coupled ecological regulation at any scale. Here we present a series of dynamical models that show how simple dormancy behavior can help account for that differential survival across a variety of seasonal conditions. Furthermore, the combination of that behavior and a traditional rein control mechanism lead to a significant increase in survivable conditions, providing a hypothesis for how ecological regulation may be scaffolded. Further discussion suggests that effective behavior of pioneer species is a requirement for the establishment of robust ecosystems.

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