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Many orb-web spiders include silk stabilimenta in their webs. This conspicuous web feature has led to many studies on their designs and possible functions. However, the same cannot be said for the less conspicuous detritus stabilimenta included in the orb webs of some species, and is a characteristic feature of some genera. The orb-web spider Azilia vachoni constructs detritus stabilimenta and suspends debris under its web. Observations were carried out in 17 primary and three disturbed habitats on the island of Trinidad, West Indies. Out of the 144 webs observed, these structures were recorded in 11 natural and one disturbed habitat, all of which had closed canopies. This preference of this species for buttress notches (the semi-open space between two buttress roots) suggests that it additionally relies on this microhabitat for concealment. This study examined possible functions and reasons for the inclusion of these features in the webs of this species. The age of individuals was taken into account because stabilimenta design differs with age. Individuals of this species showed a preference for including both detritus-covered silk stabilimenta and hanging detritus, which usually consists of a dry leaf suspended by a single strand of silk, usually behind the hub of the web. The influence of age on the inclusion of either detritus stabilimenta only or hanging detritus in the web design could not be determined because sample sizes for juveniles and subadults were too low to compare to adults.
Temporal variation in the venom yield of spiders is a relatively poorly understood phenomenon. We investigated temporal variation in venom yield of the Australian funnel-web spider Atrax sutherlandiGray 2010 (Hexathelidae: Atracinae). The venom yield of spiders collected and milked in winter was 62.9% higher than those collected and milked in autumn, despite all undergoing acclimatization (45 days in darkness at 10°C and 100%RH) before milking. Our findings highlight the potential effects of seasonality on spider venoms and lay the groundwork for future studies to investigate the evolutionary and ecological correlates of this phenomenon further.
Fifty-two spider species from six families were found on Dolgiy Island in 2004. The family Linyphiidae clearly dominates (44 species), followed by Lycosidae (4 species). Among arctic islands, Dolgiy has the secondmost species-rich spider fauna after Greenland. More than 30 of the species found are unknown from other arctic islands; this is explained by the proximity of mainland. Of the species found, 14 are true arctic spiders. Dolgiy Island is the southernmost locality for e.g. Mughiphantes sobrius (Thorell, 1871), the northernmost for Xysticus canadensis Gertsch, 1934, the westernmost e.g. for Alopecosa mutabilis (Kulczyński, 1908), Mecynargus tundricola Eskov, 1988, Semljicola simplex (Kulczyński, 1908) and Silometopoides pampia (Chamberlin, 1948), and the northernmost and westernmost for Agyneta ripariensis (Tanasevitch, 1984) and Hilaira jamalensis Eskov, 1981. Praestigia makarovaeMarusik, Gnelitsa & Koponen, 2008 has a small known arctic range (Dolgiy Island is the type locality). Diagnostic figures are given for poorly known linyphiids Gibothorax tchernovi Eskov, 1989 and Masikia indistincta (Kulczyński, 1908).
The jumping spider genus Gambaquezonia has been considered monotypic and endemic to the Philippine island of Luzon. Here, we describe a new species from the Philippine island of Panay, based on genital characters of a male and female specimen. The new species, Gambaquezonia curioi, is distinguished by the shape and structure of the male embolus and tibial apophysis, and the epigynal sperm duct. We highlight the necessity of further arachnological explorations in the Philippine archipelago.
Miombo woodlands are characterized by numerous termitaria that are suitable for studying the relationship between spiders and termites. In the Rumonge miombo woodland (south-western Burundi), we sampled spiders on 14 termite mounds and in the surrounding woodland matrix with pitfall traps, to assess the mounds' effect on the distribution of spiders. Of the 24 traps per sampling site, six were placed on the mound itself and six at intervals of 5 m, 10 m and 20 m from it. Among the 39 species recorded, mainly ground-dwelling wandering spiders, only Cyphonisia cf. kissi, Langelurillus sp. and Andromma sp. seem to be associated with termitaria. Spiders are more frequently trapped in the woodland matrix than on the mounds. This could be related to the stability of the woodland matrix, which is protected against fires, clearing, etc. by local authorities. Being complex habitats, as compared to the woodland matrix, the vegetation structure of termitaria seems to have a restrictive influence on ground-dwelling wandering spiders. We conclude that termite mounds appear to have a negligible influence on the spatial distribution of the spiders.
Altella emilieae Lissner, n. sp. is described from specimens collected from a beach in Crete and in upwash on the coast of Telendos, Dodecanese islands, Greece. The affinity of this species to its congeners and its ecology is briefly discussed.
A new species of the genus Tenuiphantes is described from France and Spain: Tenuiphantes cantabropyrenaeus Bosmans, n. sp. The species looks like T. jacksoni, T. jacksonoides, and T. zimmermanni. However, the location of the tooth of the lamella characteristica and the shape of the scape distinguish T. cantabropyrenaus from these species. A diagnosis is provided for the new species, together with notes on distribution and habitat.
Anyphaenidae has 56 genera and 546 species and includes small to medium-sized spiders, inhabiting a great diversity of environments. The subfamily Anyphaeninae comprises 32 genera and 374 species and its greatest diversity occurs in the New World. Among the Anyphaeninae, the Aysha group can be distinguished by the presence of an embolic process, which is the putative synapomorphy the group. In this paper we described the male of Temnida rosario the first time.
Harvestmen have an extensive list of predators, among which spiders stand out. To avoid predation, harvestmen have developed several defensive behaviours, which range from attempting not to be detected by their predator to releasing defensive chemicals. In this work, our aim was to determine which are the defensive behaviours adopted by four synchronic and sympatric species of gonyleptid harvestmen (Acanthopachylus aculeatus; Pachyloides thorellii, Discocyrtus prospicuus and Parampheres bimaculatus) when attacked by the lycosid Schizocosa malitiosa, a wolf spider abundant in Uruguay. Schizocosa malitiosa attacked the four harvestmen species on 77% of observations, but was only able to predate on a low percentage of cases, when the females were more effective than their male counterparts. Unexpectedly, post-detection behaviours were more effective than chemicals, which in no case prevented predation or ingestion of the prey, while the thick cuticle is a very effective barrier against this spider.