Arachnologische Mitteilungen

DOI Code: 10.5431/aramit4309
Author(s): Toscani, C., R. Leborgne & A. Pasquet
Year: 2012
Title: Behavioural analysis of web building anomalies in the orb-weaving spider Zygiella x-notata (Araneae, Araneidae)
Title translated:
Issue: Heft 43
Pages: 79-83
Abstract: Among animal constructions, spider’s orb webs represent regular geometrical architecture models. Their construction is the result of successive, simple and reproducible behavioural patterns, often considered as stereotyped. It has recently been shown that spider’s building behaviours vary, which can alter web regularity. The final capture spiral results from the laying of successive threads between two radii, here termed ‘spiral units’. We defined a theoretical normal web, as a web in which each turn of the final spiral should be parallel to the preceding one. Weaving of the spiral units sometimes leads to anomalies in the orb web. Anomalies were identified and analysed in the orb-weaving spider Zygiella x-notata (Clerck, 1757). From video recordings of web construction, we noted the displacements of the legs and of the abdomen of the spider. We compared the frequency of displacements, and their duration, between the construction of spiral units that produce a normal turn and ones that produce an anomalous turn. The position of the legs on the web’s threads was also analysed. Results showed that anomalies were not the consequences of a modification in activity but more likely the result of the position on the radii of the fourth leg. These results suggest that spiders use local information to build the final capture spiral.
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Keywords: behavioural variability, building behaviour

Arachnologische Gesellschaft - Arachnologische Mitteilungen - 10.5431/aramit4309 - 23.6.2017