How Do Spiders Change Gender?
There are a number of interesting differences between the sexes in spiders. Males have longer legs, brighter colors, and faster speeds. Females are smaller and less colorful, and lack the ability to move in a way that would make them easy prey for predators.
The male genital system must be developed before the subadult stage. Spiders have many ways to manipulate paternity.
During their mating process, males generally search for a female. When they find one, they try to mate with her. They also exclude polyandrous females from the relationship. If a female does mate with a male, he will prevent her from remating again.
Males also create gene flow between colonies. This can be accomplished by wrapping female webs. Similarly, the male can plug the female’s ducts to stop her from remating.
Male spiders have been observed using colorful courtship dances to attract females. The dancing can be a good way to determine the species of female a male is trying to mate with.
Communal spiders work together to capture prey. Males and females have been shown to use silk to navigate, climb plants, and swing. Using silk also reduces pheromone transmission.
Several studies have identified genes that affect sex-specific gene expression. These genes are often found in specific tissues and organs. In addition, transduction factors play an important role in controlling the sex-specific gene expression.
It is likely that these sex-specific genes are responsible for sex-specific dispersal in spiders. However, empirical tests are rare.