Maria J. Albo
ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION OF NUPTIAL GIFTS IN SPIDERS (PISAURIDAE AND TRECHALEIDAE)
Males offering nuptial gifts are always a target in evolutionary biology. The nuptial gifts are rare in spiders and few species have been described having this special trait. The main objective of our research is to study how was the origin of this character, how it’s maintained and evolves. Our model are the species belonging to Pisauridae and Trechaleidae families; where males wrap an insect prey in silk and offer it to the female during courtship. We focus our studies in how life conditions and selective pressures shape the reproductive behaviors and lead to evolutive changes. Our studies integrate experimental lab work that is supported by field work.
In collaboration with: Søren Toft and Cristina Tuni (Aarhus University); Gabriele Uhl (Zoology Institute and Museum, Greifswald, Germany); Mariana Trillo y Fernando G. Costa (IIBCE, Uruguay); Luiz-Ernesto Costa-Schmidt and André Klein (Universidad Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil).
Dr. Maria J. Albo is currently a postdoctoral research fellow at IIBCE (in Spanish).