We want to contrast two different periods of starvation (3-days vs. 7-days) and see the impact on spiders’ eating habits (feeding rate, feeding interval) and movement. We also want to observe the combined impact of various environmental stressors and starvation (heat and cold) on spiders’ morphology and behavior. Since a study on long-term starvation revealed that there was difference in the behavior of wolf male and wolf female spiders after food deprivation ( ), we want to observe any difference in behavior due to short-term food deprivation. We also want to observe the impact of competition on predatory behavior after food-deprivation.
We hypothesize that there would be no difference in morphology after a short starvation period, since metabolism is adjusted and resources are reallocated over a long time (Wilson, 2014). However, we expect there to be significant behavioral change between the not-starved spider and the 7-day-starved spider in terms of feeding speed and feeding amount. We expect the environmental stressors to negatively impact web-building abilities and feeding for all groups of spiders. And, we expect female wolf spiders to feed in a more uniform pattern compared to their male counterparts (reference ). We also expect there to be more aggression present (in the competitive group) between the 7-day starved spiders compared to both the 3-day starved spiders and not-starved spiders.