Dr Christina Joelle Painting

PhD Biological Sciences

Profile Image
Research Fellow


I’m a behavioural ecologist working primarily on arthropods including beetles, harvestmen and spiders, but I have a broad interest in many aspects of natural history. My main research focus to date has been on understanding the evolution of exaggerated traits, born out of a fascination with trying to understand more about peculiar-looking and previously unstudied species. I'm currently working on weapon evolution in long legged harvestmen, using a combination of behavioural experiments, genetics, and morphometrics.

Areas of expertise

Behavioural Ecology, Sexual Selection, Animal Weaponry, Morphometrics

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Painting, C. J., Myers, S., Holwell, G. I., & Buckley, T. R. (2017). Phylogeography of the New Zealand giraffe weevil Lasiorhynchus barbicornis (Coleoptera: Brentidae): A comparison of biogeographic boundaries. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society10.1093/biolinnean/blx051
  • Painting, C. J., Chang, C.-C., Seah, J. F., & Li, D. (2017). Condition dependence of female-specific UV-induced fluorescence in a jumping spider. Animal Behaviour, 127, 233-241. 10.1016/j.anbehav.2017.03.022
  • Herberstein, M. E., Painting, C. J., & Holwell, G. I. (2017). Scramble Competition Polygyny in Terrestrial Arthropods. Advances in the Study of Behavior, 49, 237-295. 10.1016/bs.asb.2017.01.001
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Gregory Holwell
  • Holwell, G. I., Allen, P. J. D., Goudie, F., Duckett, P. E., & Painting, C. J. (2016). Male density influences mate searching speed and copulation duration in millipedes (Polydesmida: Gigantowales chisholmi). Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, 70 (8), 1381-1388. 10.1007/s00265-016-2145-8
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/30696
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Gregory Holwell
  • Painting, C. J., Rajamohan, G., Chen, Z., Zeng, H., & Li, D. (2016). It takes two peaks to tango: the importance of UVB and UVA in sexual signalling in jumping spiders. Animal Behaviour, 113, 137-146. 10.1016/j.anbehav.2015.12.030
  • Painting, C. J., Splinter, W., Callander, S., Maricic, T., Peso, M., & Backwell, P. R. Y. (2016). Ladies First: Coerced Mating in a Fiddler Crab. PloS one, 11 (6)10.1371/journal.pone.0155707
  • Painting, C. J., Probert, A. F., Townsend, D. J., & Holwell, G. I. (2015). Multiple exaggerated weapon morphs: a novel form of male polymorphism in harvestmen. Scientific reports, 510.1038/srep16368
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/28435
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Gregory Holwell, Anna Probert
  • PAINTING, C. H. R. I. S. T. I. N. A. J., & HOLWELL, G. R. E. G. O. R. Y. I. (2015). Temporal variation in body size and weapon allometry in the New Zealand giraffe weevil. Ecological Entomology, 40 (4), 486-489. 10.1111/een.12199
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/31582
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Gregory Holwell