Original Paper

Biological Invasions

, Volume 12, Issue 4, pp 905-912

Competitive interactions between a native spider (Frontinella communis, Araneae: Linyphiidae) and an invasive spider (Linyphia triangularis, Araneae: Linyphiidae)

  • Julie BednarskiAffiliated withOrganismic and Evolutionary Biology, Morrill Hall, University of Massachusetts
  • , Howard GinsbergAffiliated withUSGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Coastal Field Station, Woodward Hall-PLS, University of Rhode Island
  • , Elizabeth M. JakobAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Tobin Hall, University of Massachusetts Email author 

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Abstract

There are numerous reports of spiders that have become established outside of their native ranges, but few studies examine their impact on native spiders. We examined the effect of the European hammock spider Linyphia triangularis (Araneae, Linyphiidae) on the native bowl-and-doily spider Frontinella communis (Araneae, Linyphiidae) in Acadia National Park, Maine, USA. First, we added L. triangularis to established plots of F. communis. Significantly more F. communis abandoned their webs when L. triangularis were added compared to control plots. Second, we tested whether F. communis were deterred from building webs in areas where L. triangularis was established. Significantly fewer F. communis built webs on plots with L. triangularis than on control plots. In both experiments, L. triangularis sometimes took over webs of F. communis or incorporated F. communis webs into their own webs, but F. communis never took over or incorporated L. triangularis webs. Competition between L. triangularis and F. communis for both webs and web sites may contribute to the decline of F. communis.

Keywords

Spiders Webs Competition Linyphia triangularis Frontinella communis Invasive species