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Chemical communication in harvestmen (Arachnida, Opiliones): morphology, behavior and chemistry


Chemical communication has evolved independently in various groups of invertebrates and vertebrates. However, unlike several animals that use multi-modal communication, harvestmen appear to be highly dependent on chemicals to communicate. Unexpectedly, there are only a few studies in this area and almost nothing is known about the use of pheromones in the group. In this project, we intend to explore the chemical communication in harvestmen, investigating the question with three approaches: morphology, chemistry and behavior. In the morphological study, we will describe the tegumental glands that are absent in females and others that occur in both sexes but which we have reasons to believe that may play a sexual role. For such description, a histological study will be conducted, using optical and electronic microscopes (transmission and scanning). In the chemical study, the secretions will be collected and analyzed chemically: this will be done both with glands occurring in only one sex and those present in males and females, in an attempt to detect differences between the sexes. Finally, the behavioral approach will include descriptive and behavioral experiments to understand how the secretions are used and what their functions are. With this inter-disciplinary study, we expect to obtain solid publications and form a strong research group in chemical communication at the EACH, a school only 6 years old, with available space but in need of well established and independent research groups. (AU)

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Scientific publications (19)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
PAGOTI, GUILHERME FERREIRA; PORTELA, ERIKA; CAMPANHA, JESSICA SILVA; DIAS, JESSICA MORAIS; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. On the function of the spoon-shaped pedipalps of harvestmen in the family Cosmetidae (Opiliones, Laniatores). Journal of Natural History, v. 53, n. 33-34, p. 2087-2098, . (10/00915-0)
SEGOVIA, JULIO M. G.; DEL-CLARO, KLEBER; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Delicate fangs, smart killing: the predation strategy of the recluse spider. ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR, v. 101, p. 169-177, . (10/00915-0)
GAINETT, GUILHERME; SHARMA, PRASHANT P.; GIRIBET, GONZALO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. The sensory equipment of a sandokanid: An extreme case of tarsal reduction in harvestmen (Arachnida, Opiliones, Laniatores). Journal of Morphology, v. 279, n. 9, p. 1206-1223, . (10/00915-0, 13/23189-1)
DOS SANTOS SILVA, NORTON FELIPE; FOWLER-FINN, KASEY; MORTARA, SARA RIBEIRO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. A Neotropical armored harvestman (Arachnida, Opiliones) uses proprioception and vision for homing. BEHAVIOUR, v. 155, n. 10-12, p. 793-815, . (10/00915-0)
PAGOTI, GUILHERME FERREIRA; GOMES VILLALBA PENAFLOR, MARIA FERNANDA; MARABESI, MAURO ALEXANDRE; SIMOES BENTO, JOSE MAURICIO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Proximate factors and potential benefits influencing selection of Psychotria suterella for shelter by the harvestman Jussara spec.. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, v. 163, n. 2, p. 241-250, . (10/00915-0, 15/01518-9, 08/57701-2)
DOS SANTOS, GILSON COSTA; HOGAN, JERRY A.; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Associative learning in a harvestman (Arachnida, Opiliones). Behavioural Processes, v. 100, p. 64-66, . (10/00915-0)
FERNANDES, NATHALIA DA SILVA; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Neotropical harvestmen (Arachnida, Opiliones) use sexually dimorphic glands to spread chemicals in the environment. COMPTES RENDUS BIOLOGIES, v. 337, n. 4, p. 269-275, . (10/00915-0)
DIAS, JESSICA M.; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Do sexually dimorphic glands in the harvestman Gryne perlata (Arachnida: Opiliones) release contact pheromones during mating?. European Journal of Entomology, v. 113, p. 184-191, . (10/00915-0)
SEGOVIA, JULIO M. G.; HARA, MARCOS RYOTARO; PAGOTI, GUILHERME FERREIRA; SANNOMIYA, MIRIAM; SANTOS, DEBORAH Y. A. C.; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. The Scent Glands of the Neotropical Harvestman Discocyrtus pectnifemur: Morphology, Behavior and Chemistry. Journal of Chemical Ecology, v. 41, n. 8, p. 716-723, . (10/00915-0)
GAINETT, GUILHERME; MICHALIK, PETER; MUELLER, CARSTEN H. G.; GIRIBET, GONZALO; TALARICO, GIOVANNI; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Ultrastructure of chemoreceptive tarsal sensilla in an armored harvestman and evidence of olfaction across Laniatores (Arachnida, Opiliones). ARTHROPOD STRUCTURE & DEVELOPMENT, v. 46, n. 2, p. 178-195, . (13/23189-1, 10/00915-0, 14/07671-0)
GAINETT, GUILHERME; SHARMA, PRASHANT P.; PINTO-DA-ROCHA, RICARDO; GIRIBET, GONZALO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Walk it off: predictive power of appendicular characters toward inference of higher-level relationships in Laniatores ( Arachnida: Opiliones). CLADISTICS, v. 30, n. 2, p. 120-138, . (10/00915-0, 08/06604-7)
COSTA, THAIANY M.; HEBETS, EILEEN A.; MELO, DIOGO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Costly learning: preference for familiar food persists despite negative impact on survival. BIOLOGY LETTERS, v. 12, n. 7, . (10/00915-0, 14/26262-4)
GAINETT, GUILHERME; MICHALIK, PETER; MUELLER, CARSTEN H. G.; GIRIBET, GONZALO; TALARICO, GIOVANNI; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Putative thermo-/hygroreceptive tarsal sensilla on the sensory legs of an armored harvestman (Arachnida, Opiliones). ZOOLOGISCHER ANZEIGER, v. 270, p. 81-97, . (10/00915-0, 13/23189-1, 14/07671-0)
PAGOTI, GUILHERME FERREIRA; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Strong seasonality and clear choice of resting plant in a Neotropical harvestman (Arachnida: Opiliones). JOURNAL OF ARACHNOLOGY, v. 43, n. 2, p. 207-213, . (10/00915-0, 11/12896-3)
MURAYAMA, G. P.; WILLEMART, R. H.. Mode of use of sexually dimorphic glands in a Neotropical harvestman (Arachnida: Opiliones) with paternal care. Journal of Natural History, v. 49, n. 31-32, p. 1937-1947, . (10/00915-0)
FERNANDES, NATHALIA S.; STANLEY, ESTEFANIA; COSTA, FERNANDO G.; TOSCANO-GADEA, CARLOS A.; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Chemical sex recognition in the harvestman Discocyrtus prospicuus (Arachnida: Opiliones). ACTA ETHOLOGICA, v. 20, n. 3, p. 215-221, . (10/00915-0)
DOS SANTOS SILVA, NORTON FELIPE; PAGOTI, GUILHERME FERREIRA; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Water locomotion and survival under water in a riparian harvestman (Opiliones, Arachnida). Behavioural Processes, v. 179, . (10/00915-0)
GAINETT, GUILHERME; SHARMA, PRASHANT P.; GIRIBET, GONZALO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO H.. Putative adhesive setae on the walking legs of the Paleotropical harvestman Metibalonius sp (Arachnida: Opiliones: Podoctidae). JOURNAL OF ARACHNOLOGY, v. 46, n. 1, p. 62-68, . (10/00915-0)
GAINETT, GUILHERME; SHARMA, PRASHANT P.; FERNANDES, NATHALIA; PINTO-DA-ROCHA, RICARDO; GIRIBET, GONZALO; WILLEMART, RODRIGO HIRATA. Evolution of a sensory cluster on the legs of Opiliones (Arachnida) informs multi-level phylogenetic relationships. ZOOLOGICAL JOURNAL OF THE LINNEAN SOCIETY, v. 187, n. 1, p. 143-165, . (10/00915-0, 13/23189-1, 13/50297-0, 14/07671-0, 15/01518-9)

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