Mgr. Radek Michalko, Ph.D.
prof. Mgr. Stano Pekár, Ph.D.
A main goal of ecological and evolutionary biology is understanding and predicting interactions between populations and both abiotic and biotic environments, the spatial and temporal variation of these interactions, and the effects on population dynamics and performance. Trait-based approaches can help to model these interactions and generate a comprehensive understanding of ecosystem functioning. A central tool is the collation of databases that include species trait information. Such centralized databases have been set up for a number of organismal groups but is lacking for one of the most important groups of predators in terrestrial ecosystems – spiders. Here we promote the collation of an open spider traits database, integrated into the global Open Traits Network. We explore the current collation of spider data and cover the logistics of setting up a global database, including which traits to include, the source of data, how to input data, database governance, geographic cover, accessibility, quality control and how to make the database sustainable long-term. Finally, we explore the scope of research questions that could be investigated using a global spider traits database.
Lowe E. C., Wolff J. O., Aceves-Aparicio A., Birkhofer K., Branco V. V., Cardoso P., Chichorro F., Fukushima C. S., Gonçalves-Souza T., Haddad C. R., Isaia M., Krehenwinkel H., Lynn Audisio T., Macías-Hernández N., Malumbres-Olarte J., Mammola S., McLean D. J., Michalko R., Nentwig W., Pekár S., Pétillon J., Privet K., Scott C., Uhl G., Urbano-Tenorio F., Wong B. H. & Herberstein M. E. (2020): Towards establishment of a centralized spider traits database. J. Arachnol. 48 (2): 103–109. DOI: 10.1636/0161-8202-48.2.103