Predator and prey views of spider camouflage

Nature. 2002 Jan 10;415(6868):133. doi: 10.1038/415133a.


Crab-spiders (Thomisus onustus) positioned for hunting on flowers disguise themselves by assuming the same colour as the flower, a strategy that is assumed to fool both bird predators and insect prey. But although this mimicry is obvious to the human observer, it has never been examined with respect to different visual systems. Here we show that when female crab-spiders mimic different flower species, they are simultaneously cryptic in the colour-vision systems of both bird predators and hymenopteran prey.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Birds / physiology
  • Color
  • Female
  • Hymenoptera / physiology
  • Plant Structures
  • Predatory Behavior
  • Spiders / physiology*