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The Spiders of China

The Spiders of China

SONG Daxiang (Author)

Hebei Science & Technology Publishing House, 1999
  (52,82 )
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    About this book

Spiders are common in daily human experience because of their biodiversity, wide distribu tion and abundance in favorable seasons. It is unjustifiable that their significance was previously overlooked in biological study. In western countries where Arachnology was initiated more than a century earlier than in China, spiders used to be neglected in academic circle. In China, with the exception of relevant papers published by Professor C. Ping and Professor Fen-chen Wang several decades ago, arachnology remained a vacant field for a long period of time. In recent years, owing to increasing need of biological control of insect pests in agriculture and forestry,attention has been directed to spiders with researchers gradually devoting their studies in this field. Spiders prey essentially on insects for subsistence. Emerged about four hundred million years ago and developed along the long evolutionary course of insects, the ancestral spider species were terrestrial cave dwellers and sluggish in movements. With changes in natural envi-ronment and evolution of insects in their capacity of jumping and flying, spiders improved markedly their ability in jumping and web spinning. They then developed to so-called'true spi ders'(Araneomorphae)in coincidence as insect predators. They are very specialized in possession of complicated spinnerets and well-developed silk glands secreting silk with immense strength and elasticity. Spider silk is extraordinary in its numerous functions in pray catching,locomotion, dispersal and reproduction which are marchless in other animals. Spiders are also unique in changing pedipalps into palpal organs and in their special mode of sperm transfer. As an arthropodian order it contains 35 000 species, uniformly as predators, thus forming a rare phenomenon in the phylogenesis of animal kingdom. Aside from their academic significance in zoological researches, spiders are highly valuable in human productive activities as natural enemies of many agricultural and forest insect pests.In China the beneficial contributes of spiders were recognized early in ancient times. More than two thousand years in the beginning of Han Dynasty, spiders were regarded as an augury of good harvest. There was an old popular saying that aggregation of spiders would bring forth good luck,which was recorded by Wu Jun, a scholar in Liang Dynasty in the period of South Sovereighty, in his book entitled'Annotation of West Capital'as well as by Chen Yuan-long in Qing Dynasty in his writing on'Reflection of Knowledge from Nature'. Therefore, it could be seen that our ancestors highly appreciated the beneficial effects of spiders in agriculture. Investigation conducted by scientific workers in plant protection in past ten years and more revealed that spiders accounted for over 50 % of the total predatory natural enemies of insects in farming areas, while in the rice fields where insecticide application was not too heavy, the population of spiders amounted to 450 000- 3 150 000 per ha. In Hunan Province, their density in alfalfa fields reached as high as 12 750 000 per hectare. An English scholar reported that spider population in South England grassland reached 2 265 000 per acre. It was estimated that the total weight of 'insects destroyed by spiders in England in one year surpassed that of human population in that country. Though it is hardly possible to verify the truth of this statement, we could positively affirm the immense capacity of spiders in destroying insect pests.
    Table of content

General Account
Spiders and related arthropods
External morphology of spiders
Internal structure of spiders
Courtship, mating and growth
Silk and web
Spider communication
Spider bites and poison
Role of spiders in biological control of insect pests
Phylogeny and systematics
Systematic Account
Suborder Mesothelae
Family Liphistiidae
Suborder Opisthothelae
Infraorder Mygalomorphae
Family Atypidae
Family Ctenizidae
Family Hexathelidae
Family Dipluridae
Family Nemesiidae
Family Theraphosidae
Family Hypochilidae
Infraorder Araneomorphae
Family Filistatidae
Family Sicariidae
Family Scytodidae
Family Leptonetidae
Family Telemidae
Family Pholcidae
Family Segestriidae
Family Dysderidae
Family Oonopidae
Family Palpimanidae
Family Mimetidae
Family Eresidae
Family Oecobiidae
Family Hersiliidae
Family Deinopidae
Family Uloboridae
Family Nesticidae
Family Theridiidae
Family Theridiosomatidae
Family Anapidae
Family Linyphiidae
Family Tetragnathidae
Family Araneidae
Family Lycosidae
Family Pisauridae
Family Agelenidae
Family Hahniidae
Family Dictynidae
Family Amaurobiidae
Family Titanoecidae
Family Psechridae
Family Zoropsidae
Family Oxyopidae
Family Anyphaenidae
Family Liocranidae
Family Clubionidae
Family Corinnidae
Family Zodariidae
Family Trochanteriidae
Family Prodidomidae
Family Gnaphosidae
Family Ctenidae
Family Zoridae
Family Selenopidae
Family Heteropodidae
Family Philodromidae
Family Thomisidae
Family Salticidae
ISBN: 9787537518925
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 640
Sizes: 270x195mm
Publication: 1/1999
Weight: 1540g

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