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    The evolution of a visual signal will be affected by signaler and receiver behavior, and by the physical properties of the environment where the signal is displayed. Crab spiders are typical sit-and-wait predators found in diverse ambush sites, such as tree bark, foliage, and flowers. Some of the flower-dweller species present a UV+ -white visual lure that makes them conspicuous and attractive to their prey. We hypothesized that UV+ -white coloration was associated with the evolution of a flower-dwelling habit. In addition, following up on results from a previous study we tested whether the UV+ -white coloration evolved predominantly in flower-dwelling species occurring in Australia. We measured the reflectance of 1149 specimens from 66 species collected in Australia and Europe, reconstructed a crab spider phylogeny, and applied phylogenetic comparative methods to test our hypotheses. We found that the flower-dwelling habit evolved independently multiple times, and that this trait was correlated with the evolution of the UV+ -white coloration. However, outside Australia non-flower-dwelling crab spiders also express a UV+ -white coloration. Therefore, UV+ -white reflectance is probably a recurring adaptation of some flower dwellers for attracting pollinators, although it may have other functions in non-flower dwellers, such as camouflage. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.


    Felipe M Gawryszewski, Miguel A Calero-Torralbo, Rosemary G Gillespie, Miguel A Rodríguez-Gironés, Marie E Herberstein. Correlated evolution between coloration and ambush site in predators with visual prey lures. Evolution; international journal of organic evolution. 2017 Aug;71(8):2010-2021

    PMID: 28543028

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