Metabolic consequences of feeding and fasting on nutritionally different diets in the wolf spider
We investigated whether spiders fed lipid-rich rather than protein-rich prey elevate metabolism to avoid carrying excessive lipid deposits, or whether they store ingested lipids as a buffer against possible future starvation.
We fed wolf spiders (Pardosa prativaga) prey of different lipid:protein compositions and measured the metabolic rate of spiders using closed respirometry during feeding and fasting. After a 16-day feeding period, spider lipid:protein composition was significantly affected by the lipid:protein composition of their prey. Feeding caused a large and fast increase in metabolism. The cost of feeding and digestion was estimated to average 21% of the ingested energy irrespective of diet. We found no difference in basal metabolic rate between dietary treatments. During starvation V ₀₂ and V(CO)₂decreased gradually, and the larger lipid stores in spiders fed lipid-rich prey appeared to extend survival of these spiders under starvation compared to spiders fed protein-rich prey. The results show that these spiders do not adjust metabolism in order to maintain a constant body composition when prey nutrient composition varies. Instead, lipids are stored efficiently and help to prepare the spiders for the long periods of food deprivation that may occur as a consequence of their opportunistic feeding strategy.
Title: Metabolic consequences of feeding and fasting on nutritionally different diets in the wolf spider Pardosa prativaga.
Authors: Jensen K, Mayntz D, Wang T, Simpson SJ, Overgaard J.
Source: Journal of Insect Physiology, 2010, volume 56, issue 9