Studying spider bioacoustics at the Elias Lab

February 10, 2021

In Rausser College’s Elias Lab, researchers study bioacoustics, the study of how animals produce, respond to, and interact with sound. Maggie Raboin, a graduate student at the lab, was featured in a recent Daily Cal article about her research on the effects of human-generated sound on mason spiders. 

Raboin found that mason spiders in noisy areas fare worse than those in quiet environments. The spiders spend more time hiding, as if from predators, than building mounds to protect their eggs, which results in high rates of egg mortality. While stay-at-home orders have prevented much of Raboin’s fieldwork from going forward, she and her lab continue to spend time analyzing spider communication with previously collected data.

Raboin is an ecologist and writer in the fields of behavioral ecology, wildlife biology, and animal communication. She received her B.S. in wildlife biology from the University of Montana before joining the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management. Outside of her research, Raboin enjoys participating in educational and outreach organizations, as well as spending time in the mountains hiking, biking, and skiing. Read more about her work in the Daily Cal.