Human impact is widely regarded as a vital factor influencing the adaptations of species during the Anthropocene epoch. The anthropogenic influences on vertebrate behaviour is a relatively well understood concept, however the effects which they have on invertebrates have scarcely been investigated. Inadvertently, humans are responsible for the construction of modern micro-habitats within which, invertebrates can reside. Spiders appear to have capitalised upon the niche presented by modern car wing mirrors. To provide information on the specific species which have adapted to this habitat, surveys were carried out in the North East of England and North Wales. Spiders were removed from various wing mirrors within the two regions respectively, and identified using field guides and microscopy of the epigynes of female individuals. A total sample size of 26 spiders was collected throughout data collection. The species identified from the data collection were Zygiella x-notata, Nuctenea umbratica and Enoplognatha ovata. Z. x-notata was clearly the most abundant species (n=24), followed by single individuals of both N. umbratica and E. ovata. The exceeding abundance of Z. x-notata and the unusual behavioural adaptation of E. ovata whereby an egg-sac, which are usually rolled within leaves, was synthesised within a car mirror, suggests that the wing mirror has provided a favourable micro-habitat for numerous spider species to adapt to and take advantage of. Z. x-notata, which were the most abundant species, are most commonly associated with urbanised habitats. Despite this however, N. umbratica and E. ovata are less frequently observed in such habitats, potentially indicating that spiders more commonly associated with ruralised habitats can also reside within the same geographical locations as humans if the habitat is suitable.


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StatwsHeb ei Gyhoeddi - 16 Ebr 2018
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