Min Tan, Shichang Zhang, Martin Stevens, Daiqin Li, Eunice J. Tan

Antipredator defences in motion: animals reduce predation risks by concealing or misleading motion signals

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology

ABSTRACTMotion is a crucial part of the natural world, yet our understanding of how animals avoid predation whilst moving remains rather limited. Although several theories have been proposed for how antipredator defence may be facilitated during motion, there is often a lack of supporting empirical evidence, or conflicting findings. Furthermore, many studies have shown that motion often ‘breaks’ camouflage, as sudden movement can be detected even before an individual is recognised. Whilst some static camouflage strategies may conceal moving animals to a certain extent, more emphasis should be given to other modes of camouflage and related defences in the context of motion (e.g. flicker fusion camouflage, active motion camouflage, motion dazzle, and protean motion). Furthermore, when motion is involved, defence strategies are not necessarily limited to concealment. An animal can also rely on motion to mislead predators with regards to its trajectory, location, size, colour pattern, or even identity. In this review, we discuss the various underlying antipredator strategies and the mechanisms through which they may be linked to motion, conceptualising existing empirical and theoretical studies from two perspectives – concealing and misleading effects. We also highlight gaps in our understanding of these antipredator strategies, and suggest possible methodologies for experimental designs/test subjects (i.e. prey and/or predators) and future research directions.

Need a simple solution for managing your BibTeX entries? Explore CiteDrive!

  • Web-based, modern reference management
  • Collaborate and share with fellow researchers
  • Integration with Overleaf
  • Comprehensive BibTeX/BibLaTeX support
  • Save articles and websites directly from your browser
  • Search for new articles from a database of tens of millions of references
Try out CiteDrive

More from our Archive