BT Bjorkman-Chiswell, MM Kulinski, RL Muscat, KL Nguyen, BA Norton, MRE Symonds, GE Westhorpe, MA Elgar (2004) Web-building spiders attract prey by storing decaying matter. Naturwissenschaften 91: 245-248
What’s it about?
The title pretty much explains it all
What’s the story behind it?
During my first stint at Melbourne Uni, I supervised an undergraduate research project that looked to see whether the debris that Nephila orb-weaver spiders put in their web attracts flies. It involved work at the most unusual (and frankly unsalubrious) field site I’ve ever been too – the median strip of the Hume Highway (the main road linking Sydney and Melbourne). Subsequently, our data (plus those from a second group of students supervised by Mark Elgar) were combined into this paper by Mark. Interesting factoid: the first author is now a prominent cycling activist in Melbourne.