Journal article

High contrast yellow mosaic patterns are prey attractants for orb-weaving spiders

Po Peng, Devi Stuart-Fox, Szu-Wei Chen, Eunice J Tan, Guan-Lin Kuo, Sean J Blamires, I-Min Tso, Mark A Elgar

Functional Ecology | WILEY | Published : 2020


Many animals improve their foraging success by producing signals that exploit the sensory biases of potential prey, but the specific properties that make these sensory traps effective remain unclear. We combine field experiments with phylogenetic comparative analyses to investigate the visual luring properties of different signal designs in web-building spiders. Our field experiments used cardboard spider models to examine the effects of area of colour patches, colour and pattern on the foraging success of the colourful giant wood spider, Nephila pilipes. These experiments revealed that both the colour (yellow) and pattern (yellow and black mosaic) are essential for luring prey in a high amb..

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Awarded by Ministry of Science and Technology

Awarded by Hermon Slade Foundation

Funding Acknowledgements

Ministry of Science and Technology, Grant/Award Number: 106-2311-B-029-003-MY3; Australian Government Research Training Program; Holsworth Wildlife Research Endowment -Equity Trustees Charitable Foundation; Ecological Society of Australia; Hermon Slade Foundation, Grant/Award Number: HSF17/6