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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2014

Individual variation in dispersal associated behavioral traits of the invasive Chinese mitten crab (Eriocheir sinensis, H. Milne Edwards, 1854) during initial invasion of Lake Vanern, Sweden

Brodin, Tomas; Drotz, Marcus K.


Understanding and predicting species range-expansions and biological invasions is an important challenge in modern ecology because of rapidly changing environments. Recent studies have revealed that consistent within-species variation in behavior (i.e. animal personality) can be imperative for dispersal success, a key stage in the invasion process. Here we investigate the composition and correlation of two important personality traits associated with invasion success, activity and boldness, and how they are connected to sex and individual size in a newly colonised population of the Chinese mitten crab Eriocheir sinensis in Lake Vanern, Sweden. We found no effect of sex or size on behavioral expressions of E. sinensis but a clear positive correlation between boldness and activity. In addition, this study generates important baseline data for monitoring behavioral development, and thereby changing ecological impact, of an invading population over time. This has implications for predicting ecological effects of invasive species as well as for managing ecological invasions.


Eriocheir sinensis; Biological invasion; Behavior; Boldness; Activity; Invasion front

Published in

Current Zoology
2014, Volume: 60, number: 3, pages: 410-416

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    Behavioral Sciences Biology

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