Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

Optimal foraging or predator avoidance: why does the Amazon spider Hingstepeira folisecens (Araneae: Araneidae) adopt alternative foraging behaviors?

Rito, Kátia FHanashiro, Fabio T. TPeixoto, Paulo E. CGonzaga, Marcelo O

Strategies that increase foraging efficiency may also increase predation risk. We investigated how individuals of Hingstepeira folisecens Hingston, 1932, which build shelters at the orb hub, modulate their foraging behaviors in response to the trade-off between capturing prey and becoming exposed by leaving their shelters. We evaluated whether the position of the prey on the web alters the frequency at which spiders leave their shelters. Hingstepeira folisecens spiders were more likely to capture prey positioned below than above the entrance of the shelter. Moreover, when the prey was near the entrance of the shelter, the spider pulled the threads with the entangled prey without leaving the shelter. Conversely, when the prey was distant from the entrance of the shelter, an "attack" behavior (leaving the shelter) was favored. We argue that the "pulling behavior" may be an adaptation to reduce exposure to predators.(AU)

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