Many behavioural aspects of Anoplius infuscatus (Vander Linden) and Episyron sp. Schioedte were examined in detail, both on a qualitative and, when possible, on a quantitative level, during a long-term fi eld study in Northern Italy. Both wasps dig unicellular nests on bare soil, which are fi lled with a single spider to feed the brood. The main differences regard the way to hunt their prey, that of burrowing, that of transporting and introducing the spider into the nest, the habit of amputating spider legs and the abdominal movements during nest closing. On the whole, starting from prey capture to nest closure, A. infuscatus is signifi cantly slower than Episyron. The observed ethological differences are well fi tted to the exploitation of the different preys consisting in wolf spiders (Lycosidae) and orb weaving spiders (Araneidae), respectively. Some fl exibility in the observed behaviour is described. A critical re-examination of the literature shows that, even if most results agree with those of previous authors, two controversial points remain open regarding Episyron species: the position of the egg (on the prey or on the cell wall) and the way to grasp the spider during tranport and introdution into the nest.

Nesting habits of two spider wasps: Anoplius infuscatus and Episyron sp. (Hymenoptera: Pompilidae), with a review of the literature.

MARTINOLI, ADRIANO;
2008

Abstract

Many behavioural aspects of Anoplius infuscatus (Vander Linden) and Episyron sp. Schioedte were examined in detail, both on a qualitative and, when possible, on a quantitative level, during a long-term fi eld study in Northern Italy. Both wasps dig unicellular nests on bare soil, which are fi lled with a single spider to feed the brood. The main differences regard the way to hunt their prey, that of burrowing, that of transporting and introducing the spider into the nest, the habit of amputating spider legs and the abdominal movements during nest closing. On the whole, starting from prey capture to nest closure, A. infuscatus is signifi cantly slower than Episyron. The observed ethological differences are well fi tted to the exploitation of the different preys consisting in wolf spiders (Lycosidae) and orb weaving spiders (Araneidae), respectively. Some fl exibility in the observed behaviour is described. A critical re-examination of the literature shows that, even if most results agree with those of previous authors, two controversial points remain open regarding Episyron species: the position of the egg (on the prey or on the cell wall) and the way to grasp the spider during tranport and introdution into the nest.
Hunting; Lycosidae; Araneidae; behavioural ecology; nesting
Andrietti, F.; Casiraghi, M.; Martinoli, Adriano; Polidori, C.; Montresor, C.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11383/10963
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