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MRA Nabawy, G Sivalingam, RJ Garwood, WJ Crowther and WI Sellers
Abstract
Jumping spiders are proficient jumpers that use jumps in a variety of behavioural contexts. We use high speed, high resolution video to measure the kinematics of a single regal jumping spider for a total of 15 different tasks based on a horizontal gap of 2-5 body lengths and vertical gap of +/-2 body lengths. For short range jumps, we show that low angled trajectories are used that minimise flight time. For longer jumps, take-off angles are steeper and closer to the optimum for minimum energy cost of transport. Comparison of jump performance against other arthropods shows that Phidippus regius is firmly in the group of animals that use dynamic muscle contraction for actuation as opposed to a stored energy catapult system. We find that the jump power requirements can be met from the estimated mass of leg muscle; hydraulic augmentation may be present but appears not to be energetically essential.
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