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PLASTICITY OF THE RED HOURGLASS IN FEMALE WESTERN BLACK WIDOW SPIDERS: URBAN ECOLOGICAL VARIATION, CONDITION-DEPENDENCE, AND ADAPTIVE FUNCTION


Abstract Urbanization provides an excellent opportunity to examine the effects of human-induced rapid environmental change (HIREC) on natural ecosystems. Certain species can dominate in urban habitats at the expense of biodiversity. Phenotypic plasticity may be the mechanism by which these 'urban exploiters' flourish in urban areas. Color displays and condition-dependent phenotypes are known to be highly plastic. However, conspicuous color displays are perplexing in that they can be costly to produce and may increase detection by enemies. The Western black widow spider () is a superabundant pest species that forms dense aggregations throughout metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona, USA. Adult female display a red hourglass on their abdomen, which is... (more)
Created Date 2014
Contributor Gburek, Theresa Marie (Author) / Johnson, James C (Advisor) / Mcgraw, Kevin J (Committee member) / Rutowski, Ronald L (Committee member) / Arizona State University (Publisher)
Subject Biology / Ecology / Adaptive function of color / Black Widow Spiders / Condition-dependence / Gburek / Red hourglass / Urban Ecology
Type Masters Thesis
Extent 114 pages
Language English
Copyright
Reuse Permissions All Rights Reserved
Note M.S. Biology 2014
Collaborating Institutions Graduate College / ASU Library
Additional Formats MODS / OAI Dublin Core / RIS


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Description Dissertation/Thesis