Mating-induced sexual inhibition in the jumping spider Servaea incana (Araneae Salticidae): a fast-acting and long-lasting effect

Vivian Mendez*, Rowan H. McGinley, Phillip W. Taylor

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
15 Downloads (Pure)


Mating-induced sexual inhibition has been studied extensively as an important facet of many insect mating systems but remains little understood in spiders. Once mated, females of many spider species become unreceptive and aggressive toward males, but the speed of onset and persistence of this effect are not known. Addressing this gap, the present study considers (1) mating tendency of virgins, latency to remating, and lifetime mating frequency and (2) how quickly sexual inhibition is expressed after the first mating in female Servaea incana jumping spiders. Encounters between males and females took place in two contexts that simulated locations where mating occurs in nature: in the light away from nests (‘in the open’) and in low light within the shelter of silken retreats (‘at a retreat’). Virgin females exhibited high receptivity levels in both contexts but sexual inhibition was induced immediately after their first copulation. The most common tendency was for just one mating in a lifetime, and few females mated more than twice. Context also had an effect on female mating tendency, as virgin females in the open rejected more males before accepting their first mate than did virgin females in retreats. Considering only those females that did remate, females in the open tended to reject fewer males before remating. Given low levels of female remating, virgin females appear to be at a premium for male reproductive fitness in S. incana jumping spiders and this is a likely explanation for protandry found in nature.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0184940
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 18 Oct 2017

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