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23 February 2021 The web of Dictyna bellans (Araneae: Dictynidae)
William G. Eberhard
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Webs of Dictyna bellans Chamberlin, 1919 in captivity included several characteristics seen in other dictynid webs, including a fine-meshed tubular retreat of non-sticky lines with multiple exits, “runways” of dense, fine non-sticky lines that were continuous with the floor of the retreat, and “ladders” of cribellum silk that zig-zagged between more or less parallel non-sticky lines. They also included two traits not previously reported for dictynids: especially tightly spaced cribellum lines with tight zig-zags that were on and very close to the substrate at the edges of the web near the retreat; and extensive coiling of cribellum silk on a few long, elevated non-sticky lines. The webs of D. bellans argue against the supposition made in some studies of web evolution that webs built especially near the substrate lack complex organization. They also indicate that the degree of coiling of cribellum lines varies among dictynids and in other cribellate spiders, and may represent a useful axis of comparison that reflects adaptations for prey retention.

William G. Eberhard "The web of Dictyna bellans (Araneae: Dictynidae)," The Journal of Arachnology 48(3), 272-277, (23 February 2021).
Received: 25 November 2019; Published: 23 February 2021
Dictynid web
flexible behavior
non-orb design
substrate web
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