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van Helsdingen P.J.,European Invertebrate Survey Nederland
Arachnologische Mitteilungen | Year: 2011

Spiders are powerful predators, but the threats confronting them are numerous. A survey is presented of the many different arthropods which waylay spiders in various ways. Some food-specialists among spiders feed exclusively on spiders. Kleptoparasites are found among spiders as well as among Mecoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, and Heteroptera. Predators are found within spiders' own population (cannibalism), among other spider species (araneophagy), and among different species of Heteroptera, Odonata, and Hymenoptera. Parasitoids are found in the orders Hymenoptera and Diptera. The largest insect order, Coleoptera, comprises a few species among the Carabidae which feed on spiders, but beetles are not represented among the kleptoparasites or parasitoids. Source


Miller J.A.,Naturalis Biodiversity Center | Miller J.A.,California Academy of Sciences | Beentjes K.K.,Naturalis Biodiversity Center | Van Helsdingen P.,European Invertebrate Survey Nederland | Ijland S.,Gabriel Metzustraat 1
ZooKeys | Year: 2013

We report initial results from an ongoing effort to build a library of DNA barcode sequences for Dutch spiders and investigate the utility of museum collections as a source of specimens for barcoding spiders. Source material for the library comes from a combination of specimens freshly collected in the field specifically for this project and museum specimens collected in the past. For the museum specimens, we focus on 31 species that have been frequently collected over the past several decades. A series of progressively older specimens representing these 31 species were selected for DNA barcoding. Based on the pattern of sequencing successes and failures, we find that smaller-bodied species expire before larger-bodied species as tissue sources for single-PCR standard DNA barcoding. Body size and age of oldest successful DNA barcode are significantly correlated after factoring out phylogenetic effects using independent contrasts analysis. We found some evidence that extracted DNA concentration is correlated with body size and inversely correlated with time since collection, but these relationships are neither strong nor consistent. DNA was extracted from all specimens using standard destructive techniques involving the removal and grinding of tissue. A subset of specimens was selected to evaluate nondestructive extraction. Nondestructive extractions significantly extended the DNA barcoding shelf life of museum specimens, especially small-bodied species, and yielded higher DNA concentrations compared to destructive extractions. All primary data are publically available through a Dryad archive and the Barcode of Life database. © Jeremy A. Miller et al. Source


Dijkstra K.-D.B.,Netherlands Center for Biodiversity Naturalis | Kalkman V.J.,European Invertebrate Survey Nederland
Organisms Diversity and Evolution | Year: 2012

Although Europe is the cradle of dragonfly systematics and despite great progress in the last 2 decades, many issues in naming its species and understanding their evolutionary history remain unresolved. Given the public interest, conservation importance and scientific relevance of Odonata, it is time that remaining questions on the species' status, names and affinities are settled. We review the extensive but fragmentary literature on the phylogeny, classification and taxonomy of European Odonata, providing summary phylogenies for well-studied groups and an ecological, biogeographic and evolutionary context where possible. Priorities for further taxonomic, phylogenetic and biogeographic research are listed and discussed. We predict that within a decade the phylogeny of all European species will be known. © Gesellschaft für Biologische Systematik 2012. Source


Johan Kotze D.,University of Helsinki | Brandmayr P.,University of Calabria | Casale A.,University of Sassari | Dauffy-Richard E.,IRSTEA | And 16 more authors.
ZooKeys | Year: 2011

'Carabidologists do it all' (Niemelä 1996a) is a phrase with which most European carabidologists are familiar. Indeed, during the last half a century, professional and amateur entomologists have contributed enormously to our understanding of the basic biology of carabid beetles. The success of the field is in no small part due to regular European Carabidologists' Meetings, which started in 1969 in Wijster, the Netherlands, with the 14 th meeting again held in the Netherlands in 2009, celebrating the 40 th anniversary of the first meeting and 50 years of long-term research in the Dwingelderveld. This paper offers a subjective summary of some of the major developments in carabidology since the 1960s. Taxonomy of the family Carabidae is now reasonably established, and the application of modern taxonomic tools has brought up several surprises like elsewhere in the animal kingdom. Progress has been made on the ultimate and proximate factors of seasonality and timing of reproduction, which only exceptionally show non-seasonality. Triggers can be linked to evolutionary events and plausibly explained by the "taxon cycle" theory. Fairly little is still known about certain feeding preferences, including granivory and ants, as well as unique life history strategies, such as ectoparasitism and predation on higher taxa. The study of carabids has been instrumental in developing metapopulation theory (even if it was termed differently). Dispersal is one of the areas intensively studied, and results show an intricate interaction between walking and flying as the major mechanisms. The ecological study of carabids is still hampered by some unresolved questions about sampling and data evaluation. It is recognised that knowledge is uneven, especially concerning larvae and species in tropical areas. By their abundance and wide distribution, carabid beetles can be useful in population studies, bioindication, conservation biology and landscape ecology. Indeed, 40 years of carabidological research have provided so much data and insights, that among insects - and arguably most other terrestrial organisms - carabid beetles are one of the most worthwhile model groups for biological studies. © DJ Kotze et al. Source

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