Maternal effects on egg investment and offspring performance inblack widow spiders

James Johnson, Lindsay S. Miles, Patricia J. Trubl, Alycia Hagenmaier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Maternal effects are powerful forces of adaptive evolution but their widespread implications, especially in human-disturbed environments, are still being realized. Here we examine the role of maternal effects in shaping fitness-related behaviour and life-history traits in black widow spiders, Latrodectus hesperus. We test the prediction that adult foraging success shapes maternal body condition, fecundity and egg investment, and that maternal prey abundance has a positive, cross-generational effect on a number of important offspring traits. Our results suggest that maternal foraging success is indeed translated into positive effects on maternal body condition, eggsac mass, egg number, egg mass, egg size, egg density and development rate. Maternal feeding had no effect on sibling cannibalism. Interestingly, despite the statistically significant effects of maternal food regime on offspring parameters listed above, some mothers in the high-food treatment nevertheless made low-density eggs and some mothers in the low-food treatment made high-density eggs. Thus, maternal egg investment, and several other life-history variables, were influenced by a family effect that cannot be explained solely by our manipulation of maternal foraging. For example, a strong effect of family on the latency to sibling cannibalism, in the absence of any link between maternal food regime, egg density and cannibalism, suggests that direct genetic effects, rather than maternal effects, may explain this fitness-related behavioural trait. We discuss the implications of these findings for our understanding of the behaviour, ecology and evolution of this and other arthropods, with particular reference to the possibility that maternal effects may facilitate rapid evolution to human-disturbed habitats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-73
Number of pages7
JournalAnimal Behaviour
Volume91
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Fingerprint

maternal effect
spider
Araneae
egg
cannibalism
foraging
egg masses
body condition
Latrodectus hesperus
Latrodectus mactans
food
life history
fitness
arthropods
fecundity
egg size
ecology
life history trait
prediction
arthropod

Keywords

  • Black widow spider
  • Cannibalism
  • Indirect genetic effect
  • Latrodectus hesperus
  • Maternal effect
  • Maternal investment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

Maternal effects on egg investment and offspring performance inblack widow spiders. / Johnson, James; Miles, Lindsay S.; Trubl, Patricia J.; Hagenmaier, Alycia.

In: Animal Behaviour, Vol. 91, 2014, p. 67-73.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Johnson, James ; Miles, Lindsay S. ; Trubl, Patricia J. ; Hagenmaier, Alycia. / Maternal effects on egg investment and offspring performance inblack widow spiders. In: Animal Behaviour. 2014 ; Vol. 91. pp. 67-73.
@article{6b5d0f9c405543ba85720a06fc38f3b3,
title = "Maternal effects on egg investment and offspring performance inblack widow spiders",
abstract = "Maternal effects are powerful forces of adaptive evolution but their widespread implications, especially in human-disturbed environments, are still being realized. Here we examine the role of maternal effects in shaping fitness-related behaviour and life-history traits in black widow spiders, Latrodectus hesperus. We test the prediction that adult foraging success shapes maternal body condition, fecundity and egg investment, and that maternal prey abundance has a positive, cross-generational effect on a number of important offspring traits. Our results suggest that maternal foraging success is indeed translated into positive effects on maternal body condition, eggsac mass, egg number, egg mass, egg size, egg density and development rate. Maternal feeding had no effect on sibling cannibalism. Interestingly, despite the statistically significant effects of maternal food regime on offspring parameters listed above, some mothers in the high-food treatment nevertheless made low-density eggs and some mothers in the low-food treatment made high-density eggs. Thus, maternal egg investment, and several other life-history variables, were influenced by a family effect that cannot be explained solely by our manipulation of maternal foraging. For example, a strong effect of family on the latency to sibling cannibalism, in the absence of any link between maternal food regime, egg density and cannibalism, suggests that direct genetic effects, rather than maternal effects, may explain this fitness-related behavioural trait. We discuss the implications of these findings for our understanding of the behaviour, ecology and evolution of this and other arthropods, with particular reference to the possibility that maternal effects may facilitate rapid evolution to human-disturbed habitats.",
keywords = "Black widow spider, Cannibalism, Indirect genetic effect, Latrodectus hesperus, Maternal effect, Maternal investment",
author = "James Johnson and Miles, {Lindsay S.} and Trubl, {Patricia J.} and Alycia Hagenmaier",
year = "2014",
doi = "10.1016/j.anbehav.2014.02.031",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "91",
pages = "67--73",
journal = "Animal Behaviour",
issn = "0003-3472",
publisher = "Academic Press Inc.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Maternal effects on egg investment and offspring performance inblack widow spiders

AU - Johnson, James

AU - Miles, Lindsay S.

AU - Trubl, Patricia J.

AU - Hagenmaier, Alycia

PY - 2014

Y1 - 2014

N2 - Maternal effects are powerful forces of adaptive evolution but their widespread implications, especially in human-disturbed environments, are still being realized. Here we examine the role of maternal effects in shaping fitness-related behaviour and life-history traits in black widow spiders, Latrodectus hesperus. We test the prediction that adult foraging success shapes maternal body condition, fecundity and egg investment, and that maternal prey abundance has a positive, cross-generational effect on a number of important offspring traits. Our results suggest that maternal foraging success is indeed translated into positive effects on maternal body condition, eggsac mass, egg number, egg mass, egg size, egg density and development rate. Maternal feeding had no effect on sibling cannibalism. Interestingly, despite the statistically significant effects of maternal food regime on offspring parameters listed above, some mothers in the high-food treatment nevertheless made low-density eggs and some mothers in the low-food treatment made high-density eggs. Thus, maternal egg investment, and several other life-history variables, were influenced by a family effect that cannot be explained solely by our manipulation of maternal foraging. For example, a strong effect of family on the latency to sibling cannibalism, in the absence of any link between maternal food regime, egg density and cannibalism, suggests that direct genetic effects, rather than maternal effects, may explain this fitness-related behavioural trait. We discuss the implications of these findings for our understanding of the behaviour, ecology and evolution of this and other arthropods, with particular reference to the possibility that maternal effects may facilitate rapid evolution to human-disturbed habitats.

AB - Maternal effects are powerful forces of adaptive evolution but their widespread implications, especially in human-disturbed environments, are still being realized. Here we examine the role of maternal effects in shaping fitness-related behaviour and life-history traits in black widow spiders, Latrodectus hesperus. We test the prediction that adult foraging success shapes maternal body condition, fecundity and egg investment, and that maternal prey abundance has a positive, cross-generational effect on a number of important offspring traits. Our results suggest that maternal foraging success is indeed translated into positive effects on maternal body condition, eggsac mass, egg number, egg mass, egg size, egg density and development rate. Maternal feeding had no effect on sibling cannibalism. Interestingly, despite the statistically significant effects of maternal food regime on offspring parameters listed above, some mothers in the high-food treatment nevertheless made low-density eggs and some mothers in the low-food treatment made high-density eggs. Thus, maternal egg investment, and several other life-history variables, were influenced by a family effect that cannot be explained solely by our manipulation of maternal foraging. For example, a strong effect of family on the latency to sibling cannibalism, in the absence of any link between maternal food regime, egg density and cannibalism, suggests that direct genetic effects, rather than maternal effects, may explain this fitness-related behavioural trait. We discuss the implications of these findings for our understanding of the behaviour, ecology and evolution of this and other arthropods, with particular reference to the possibility that maternal effects may facilitate rapid evolution to human-disturbed habitats.

KW - Black widow spider

KW - Cannibalism

KW - Indirect genetic effect

KW - Latrodectus hesperus

KW - Maternal effect

KW - Maternal investment

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84896934119&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84896934119&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.anbehav.2014.02.031

DO - 10.1016/j.anbehav.2014.02.031

M3 - Article

VL - 91

SP - 67

EP - 73

JO - Animal Behaviour

JF - Animal Behaviour

SN - 0003-3472

ER -