Gifts key to spider courtship

Male nursery web spiders who give gifts to females are more likely to successfully mate than males who don’t, according to a new study published in BMC Evolutionary Biology.

In addition, the females allowed males to spend a longer time transferring sperm if they had received edible gifts, such as insects, than if they had received worthless gifts, such as inedible plant seeds or empty exoskeletons.

Both male and female spiders appeared to be able to assess the value of the gift and modify their behaviour accordingly.

Read more at BMC Evolutionary Biology