Evidence for Multiple Paternity in Broods of the Green Lynx Spider Peucetia viridans (Araneae: Oxyopidae)
In the green lynx spider Peucetia viridans (Hentz 1832), the two openings of a mated female’s epigynum are often sealed by copulatory plugs, sometimes with the two-pronged distal portion of the paracybium of a male palpus inserted in each opening and embedded in the plugs. The presence of copulatory plugs and paracymbia may prevent further mating by the female. However, not all mated females exhibit these structures, perhaps allowing some P. viridans females to mate with more than one male, despite the assertion of Whitcomb & Eason (1965) that females only mate once. We investigated this possibility by surveying the extent of multiple paternity in field-collected P. viridans broods from southern California. For adult females and their egg sacs, we determined the aspartate aminotransferase genotype for each mother and her spiderlings using allozyme electrophoresis in order to assess whether the progeny data best fit with a single male as the father. Two broods exhibited clear evidence of multiple paternity, verifying that multiple mating by females is possible in this species. Although most mothers of single paternity broods had one or both epigynal orifices blocked, some had no blockage at all, while the two mothers of multiple paternity broods had some kind of blockage to one or both orifices, suggesting that neither plugs nor inserted paracymbial processes are associated with a reduction in female remating.
Ramirez, M. G., E. C. Wight, V. A. Chirikian, E. S. Escobedo, L. K. Quezada, A. S. Schamberger, J. A. Kagihara & C. L. Hoey. Evidence for multiple paternity in broods of the green lynx spider Peucetia viridans (Araneae, Oxyopidae). Journal of Arachnology 37: 375-378.