Behavioral interference between species, such as territorial aggression, courtship, and mating, is widespread in animals. While aggressive and reproductive forms of interspecific interference have generally been studied separately, their many parallels and connections warrant a unified conceptual approach. Substantial evidence exists that aggressive and reproductive interference have pervasive effects on species coexistence, range limits, and evolutionary processes, including divergent and convergent forms of character displacement. Alien species invasions and climate change-induced range shifts result in novel interspecific interactions, heightening the importance of predicting the consequences of species interactions, and behavioral interference is a fundamental but neglected part of the equation. Here, we outline priorities for further theoretical and empirical research on the ecological and evolutionary consequences of behavioral interference. Aggressive and reproductive forms of behavioral interference between species are widespread in animals and share many parallels in their underlying causes and their ecological and evolutionary effects.Behavioral interference can determine whether species coexist and, thus, affects species ranges, the persistence of native species, and the spread of invasive species.As species ranges shift under environmental change and new interspecific interactions arise, it will be important to incorporate knowledge of behavioral interference into ecological forecasts and conservation planning.Behavioral interference can drive both divergent and convergent character displacement processes and thereby contribute to phenotypic diversity and speciation.Evidence is accumulating that behavioral interference has shaped large-scale ecological and evolutionary patterns.

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Keywords Character displacement, Competitive exclusion, Interference competition, Interspecific aggression, Reproductive interference, Sexual exclusion
Persistent URL
Journal Trends in Ecology and Evolution
Grether, G.F. (Gregory F.), Peiman, K.S. (Kathryn S.), Tobias, J.A. (Joseph A.), & Robinson, B.W. (Beren W.). (2017). Causes and Consequences of Behavioral Interference between Species. Trends in Ecology and Evolution. doi:10.1016/j.tree.2017.07.004