Biological Invasions

, Volume 12, Issue 4, pp 905–912 | Cite as

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

  • Julie Bednarski
  • Howard Ginsberg
  • Elizabeth M. Jakob
Original Paper


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.


Spiders Webs Competition Linyphia triangularis Frontinella communis Invasive species 



Adam Porter, Ethan Clotfelter, Jeremy Houser, Skye Long, Sarah Partan, Ted Stankowich, Mary Ratnaswamy and two anonymous reviewers provided helpful comments on the manuscript. We are deeply grateful to Daniel Jennings for his assistance with this project. We thank the Acadia National Park rangers, especially David Manski, Bruce Connery, Ed Pontbriand, and Bill Widener for assistance throughout this project and for permission to work at the Park. Michelle Bierman, Jim McKenna, and staff of the Schoodic Education and Research Center provided crucial logistical support. This research was made possible by a grant from the National Park Service and US Geological Survey awarded to E. M. Jakob, J. Houser and D. Jennings.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julie Bednarski
    • 1
  • Howard Ginsberg
    • 2
  • Elizabeth M. Jakob
    • 3
  1. 1.Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Morrill HallUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA
  2. 2.USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Coastal Field Station, Woodward Hall-PLSUniversity of Rhode IslandKingstonUSA
  3. 3.Department of Psychology, Tobin HallUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA

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