We determined the effects of chronic heat stress on web construction of Parasteatoda tepidariorum (Araneae: Theridiidae) by measuring the survival and web mass of specimens after a 48-h period within a temperature chamber at 21, 30, 35, 40, or 50°C. The 21, 30 and 35°C treatments had the highest mean survival rate (100%), the 50°C treatment had the lowest (0%), and the 40°C treatment was intermediate (58%). The 21, 30, and 35°C treatments had the highest mean web mass, and the 40 and 50°C treatments had the lowest. Web mass did not correlate with spider mass for specimens across all temperature treatments. While acclimation temperature and humidity fluctuated throughout the 3 weeks of the study, neither variable affected web mass. This study demonstrates the sublethal effect of temperature on web construction, an effect that would ultimately be lethal in nature if a spider was unable to construct its web.
Brown, Aubrey J. and Houghton, David
"Effect of laboratory heat stress on mortality and web mass of the common house spider, Parasteatoda tepidariorum (Koch 1841) (Araneae: Theridiidae),"
The Great Lakes Entomologist, vol 52
Available at: https://scholar.valpo.edu/tgle/vol52/iss2/8