Natural Resources, School of


Document Type


Date of this Version

September 1986


Published in OIKOS 46:3, pp. 390-396. (Copenhagen, 1986). Copyright Nordic Ecological Society. Published by Blackwell Publishing for the Nordic Ecological Society. Used by permission. “The definitive version is available at”


Removal experiments with three species of heteromyid rodents were performed during two summers in the Great Basin of Nevada, USA. These experiments were designed to determine the importance of interference competition in these species by quantifying the short-term responses to the removal of one or more of the species. Our results indicate that the removal of a large species (Dipodomys merriami) does have a positive effect on a smaller species with a similar diet (Perognathus longimembris). These results and others presented are consistent with a hypothesis of interference competition. However, while there is short-term increase in number of rodents in response to removals, the increase is not commensurate with the number of animals removed. We conclude that interference competition was present but weak in the two summers we manipulated this community.