Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

 
 
 
 

 
                 
You are here: Home / Associated publications / Belgian Journal of Zoology / Bibliographic References / Colour variation and crypsis in relation to habitat selection in the males of the crab spider Xysticus sabulosus (Hahn, 1832) (Araneae : Thomisidae)

D Bonte and JP Maelfait (2004)

Colour variation and crypsis in relation to habitat selection in the males of the crab spider Xysticus sabulosus (Hahn, 1832) (Araneae : Thomisidae)

BELGIAN JOURNAL OF ZOOLOGY, 134(S1):3-7.

The crab spider Xysticus sabulosus (HAHN, 1832) is a sit-and-wait predator, typical for sandy habitats in Europe and Flanders. In the Flemish coastal dunes, the species is very abundant in grey and blond dunes. Its abdominal and cephalothorical colour varies from almost completely white to dark brown. During autumn 2001, we investigated crypsis as a function of the occupied micro- and macrohabitat. Our results indicate that (1) Colouration differs between the populations. The species is darker in a grey dune completely covered with dried (brown) mosses and in a humid dune slack covered with algae, than in populations from a sea inlet and from a blond dune. The colouration of a population from a grey dune with mosses, lichens and bare sand is intermediate. (2) Individual cephalothoracal colouration is, in contrast to abdominal colouration, related to microhabitat selection : individuals with darker cephalothoraxes occupy hunting sites with a higher coverage of mosses, while those with a pale one are found in microhabitats with a high amount of nude sand. The observed spider colour-environment covariation between populations is probably the result of natural selection or colour alteration during the juvenile development. Further research on these possible underlying mechanisms remains, however, necessary.

coastal dunes; microhabitat; foraging; predation
9th Benelux Congress of Zoology, Antwerp, BELGIUM, NOV 08-09, 2002
BJZ

ISSN 2295-0451 (online version)
ISSN 0777-6279 (printed version)
impact factor 2015: 0,87.

Editor-in-Chief:
Prof. Dr. Isa Schön
Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences
Vautierstraat 29
1000 Brussels, Belgium

 



1863-1903
Annales de la Société malacologique de Belgique
 
1903-1923
​Annales de la Société royale malacologique et zoologique de Belgique
 
1923-1989
Annales de la Société Royale Zoologique de Belgique
 
1989-
Belgian Journal of Zoology