Linking colouration and animal personality: a perspective (#884)
Many animals show remarkable within-species variations in morphology and behaviour (phenotypes), and these variations can be understood in terms of an individual’s maximizing their short- or long-term fitness. It is well established that between-individual colour variations have been maintained by the processes of selection in a wide range of animals. There has been a recent explosion of interest in studying consistent inter-individual differences in behaviour across time and contexts, so-called personality, and on which selection also acts. Numerous studies have shown a link between colouration and an average behaviour of the species, but fewer researchers have attempted to relate individual differences in colouration to personality (i.e., consistent between-individual differences in behaviour), both theoretically and empirically. Here we review some of available examples and present hypotheses for personality-colouration relationships. We then suggest how to establish such relationships and discuss the possible future research directions in this field.