Spider Web Protection Through Visual Advertisement: Role of the Stabilimentum

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Science  14 Jan 1983:
Vol. 219, Issue 4581, pp. 185-187
DOI: 10.1126/science.219.4581.185


The conspicuous white silken adornments known as stabilimenta, which are commonly found in the orb webs of some spiders, appear to be protective devices that warn birds of the presence of webs in their flight path. Webs endowed with artificial equivalents of stabilimenta tended to survive intact the early morning period when birds are on the wing; unmarked webs showed a high incidence of destruction.

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