Details matter when modelling the effects of animal personality on the spatial distribution of foragers

Christoph Netz*, Aparajitha Ramesh, Jakob Gismann, Pratik R. Gupte, Franz J. Weissing*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/Letter to the editorAcademicpeer-review

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By means of a simulation study, DiNuzzo & Griffen [1] investigate whether individual variation in a personality trait can explain ‘undermatching’, an often-observed deviation from the ideal free distribution (IFD). Here, we raise five points of concern about this study, regarding (i) the interpretation of the results in terms of personality variation; (ii) deficiencies in the technical implementation of the model, leading to wrong conclusions; (iii) the effects of population size on deviations from the IFD; (iv) the measure used for quantifying deviations from the IFD and (v) the analysis of the mud crab data. Finally, we provide an overview of the evolutionary ramifications of the relation between animal personality and the IFD.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20210903
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Issue number1970
Early online date2-Mar-2022
Publication statusPublished - 9-Mar-2022


  • animal personality
  • Ideal free distribution
  • individual-based modelling
  • optimal foraging

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