1932

Abstract

Spiders (Araneae) make up a remarkably diverse lineage of predators that have successfully colonized most terrestrial ecosystems. All spiders produce silk, and many species use it to build capture webs with an extraordinary diversity of forms. Spider diversity is distributed in a highly uneven fashion across lineages. This strong imbalance in species richness has led to several causal hypotheses, such as codiversification with insects, key innovations in silk structure and web architecture, and loss of foraging webs. Recent advances in spider phylogenetics have allowed testing of some of these hypotheses, but results are often contradictory, highlighting the need to consider additional drivers of spider diversification. The spatial and historical patterns of diversity and diversification remain contentious. Comparative analyses of spider diversification will advance only if we continue to make progress with studies of species diversity, distribution, and phenotypic traits, together with finer-scale phylogenies and genomic data.

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2021-01-07
2024-04-16
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