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    Author(s): Javier E. Mercado; Jorge A. Santiago-Blay
    Date: 2015
    Source: Life: The Excitement of Biology. 3(1): 20-32.
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Rocky Mountain Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (788 KB)


    The Neotropical genus, Arachnocoris Scott groups thirteen species of specialized spider web-inhabiting damsel bugs (Nabidae) distributed from Panama to Brazil and the West Indies. We present new information on the web behavior of A. berytoides Uhler from Puerto Rico. Three different life stages were observed on the spider webs, suggesting this species likely depends on that microhabitat for all its life history stages. In addition to the modified tarsi described by Myers, we describe mimetic adaptations that may help it live a life in close association with its predacious host. Species in this genus are facultative kleptoparasites that are highly dependent on spider webs for obtaining their food. In Puerto Rico, Arachnocoris berytoides perhaps mimics multiple models through several types of mimicry including: Aposematic, Aggressive, Batesian-Wallacean, Wicklerian-Eisnerian, and possibly Mullerian-Batesian mimicry. An observation in which a male watched as females approach a food item might represent a type of mate guarding behavior not previously described in this genus.

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    Mercado, Javier E.; Santiago-Blay, Jorge A. 2015. Multiple model mimicry and feeding behavior of the spider web-inhabiting damsel bug, Arachnocoris berytoides Uhler (Hemiptera: Nabidae), from Puerto Rico. Life: The Excitement of Biology. 3(1): 20-32.


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    Arachnophilic, Hemiptera, Nabidae, myrmecomorphy, kleptoparasitic

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