Intraspecific Competition and Evolution

  • Freddy Bugge Christiansen
  • Volker Loeschcke
Part of the Lecture Notes in Biomathematics book series (LNBM, volume 39)


The formulation of ecological genetic models allows specific assumptions about the interaction between an individual and its environment to be translated into evolutionary forces in the population. An approach to this is the analysis of phenotypic characters related to competition coefficients through the use of the niche concept as formulated by Mac- Arthur and Levins (1967; Levins, 1968). This formulation has been used in the analysis of intraspecific competition by Roughgarden (1972), Matessi and Jayakar (1976), and Christiansen and Fenchel (1977; Fenchel and Christiansen, 19 77). The models used in these investigations are classical population genetic models with discrete non-overlapping gene-rations, where the individual fitnesses are considered as functions of the population density (Wright, 1960). Intraspecific competition for a common uniform food supply will allow the influence of competition on the growth rate to be described in terms of the total population size of the species (Volterra, 1927; Lotka, 1932) resulting in pure density dependent selection (Anderson, 19 71; Charlesworth, 19 71; Rough-garden, 1971; Clarke, 1972). On the other hand, intraspecific competition for a more varied supply of resources may make the competition experienced by an individual dependent on the genotypic composition of the population resulting in so-called density and frequency dependent selection.


Intraspecific Competition Competition Model Resource Optimum Character Displacement Exploitative Competition 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Freddy Bugge Christiansen
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Volker Loeschcke
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute of Ecology and GeneticsUniversity of AarhusAarhusDenmark
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesStanford UniversityUSA
  3. 3.Institute of GeneticsFree University of BerlinBerlinGermany

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