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9 June 2013 A New Species of the Tracheline Genus Fuchibotulus Haddad & Lyle, 2008 (Araneae: Corinnidae)
Robin Lyle
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A new species of the tracheline genus Fuchibotulus Haddad & Lyle, 2008 (Araneae: Corinnidae) is described. Fuchibotulus haddadi sp. n. is only known from the type locality in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. An updated diagnostic key to all known species of the genus is provided.


Fuchibotulus Haddad & Lyle, 2008 is one of several recently described tracheline sac spider genera (Araneae: Corinnidae) from the Afrotropical Region (Haddad 2006; Haddad & Lyle 2008; Lyle & Haddad 2009, 2010). The genus originally included only two species, F. bicornis Haddad & Lyle, 2008 (type species) and F. kigelia Haddad & Lyle, 2008. Both species were described on the basis of males and females. The new species described herein, F. haddadi sp. n., is known only from females. With the inclusion of the new species, the range of the genus is expanded to include the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa.

In the subfamily Trachelinae, Fuchibotulus is similar in appearance to Fuchiba Haddad & Lyle, 2008, sharing a number of morphological characters. Both are robust trachelines lacking any cusps and spines on the legs with (Haddad & Lyle 2008).

However, the two genera differ from each other in abdominal characteristics. Members of Fuchiba have dorsal scutum present in males and absent in females, while Fuchibotulus only has dorsal sigilla with several pairs of minute intermediate sclerites between them (Fig. 3) in both sexes. In F. haddadi sp. n., the sigilla are absent in some individuals in the type series. Members of Fuchiba have a finely granulated carapace surface texture, while in Fuchibotulus the surface texture is strongly tuberculated. The genitalia are also genus-specific. The palp of Fuchiba males have a short, coiled embolus situated distally on the tegulum with a simple single retrolateral tibial apophysis. In Fuchibotulus, the embolus is needle-like associated with a small membranous conductor and a retrolateral tibial apophysis that is either single or bifid with a small tooth-like apophysis. The Fuchiba females have copulatory openings laterally situated in a large circular depression with large circular spermathecae, while those of Fuchibotulus have smaller copulatory openings with sausage-like spermathecae and tightly twisted entrance ducts.


Specimens were prepared following the method used by Haddad and Lyle (2008). Digital habitus photographs were taken using a high resolution microscopy camera AxioCam MRc5 mounted on a Zeiss Axio Zoom V16 microscope. Extended focal ranges were stacked using the ZEN module Z-stack software.

Body measurements were taken of the largest and smallest specimens to determine a size range. Eye and leg measurements were taken from the second largest specimen. All measurements are given in millimetres (mm).

The following abbreviations are used: AER — anterior eye row, AL — abdomen length, ALE — anterior lateral eye, AME — anterior median eye, AW — abdomen width, CL — carapace length, CW — carapace width, FL — fovea length, PER — posterior eye row, PLE — posterior lateral eye, PME — posterior median eye, SL — sternum length, ST — spermatheca, SW — sternum width, TL — total length.

The type series is deposited in the Ditsong National Museum of Natural History (formerly Transvaal Museum), South Africa (TMSA).


Genus Fuchibotulus Haddad & Lyle, 2008
Fuchibotulus haddadi sp. n.
Figs 1–5

  • Etymology: The species is named after the collector of the type series, C. Haddad.

  • Diagnosis: Females can be easily recognised by the compact, inverted U-shaped ridges of the copulatory openings, unlike the two previously described species that have less strongly curved ridges. The shape and length of ST II of F haddadi sp. n. is similar to F. kigelia, but does not extend past the copulatory openings. Male unknown.

  • Description:

  • Female:

  • Measurements (n=4): CL 1.24–1.57, CW 1.01–1.22, AL 1.64–1.80, AW 1.22–1.39, TL 2.89–3.37, FL 0.06–0.10, SL 0.70–0.81, SW 0.70–0.81, AME-AME 0.07, AME-ALE 0.03, ALE-ALE 0.21, PME-PME 0.09, PME-PLE 0.12, PLE-PLE 0.42. Length of leg segments (from femur to tarsus, and total): I 0.81+0.44+0.61+0.51+0.38=2.75; II 0.76+0.40+0.56+0.47+0.36=2.55; III 0.68+0.34+0.43 + 0.49+0.25=2.19; IV 0.88+ 0.42+0.71+0.80+0.29=3.10.

  • Carapace: Bright to deep orange; slightly rounded with steep decline in last fifth of carapace, highest point at approx. 0.4 carapace length; surface finely granulate with short, fine setae; fovea small, distinct, at 0.8 carapace length; clypeus height equal to AME diameter. Eyes: Black rings around eyes; AER very slightly recurved; lateral eyes slightly larger than median eyes; AME separated by distance slightly larger than their diameter, AME separated from ALE by 0.25 AME diameter; PER strongly recurved; PME separated by their diameter, PME separated from PLE by nearly double PME diameter. Chelicerae: Pale to deep orange; surface granulated with scattered, short and long setae; cheliceral furrow with three promarginal teeth, largest tooth medially; three retromarginal teeth, largest tooth situated proximally to fang, smallest distally. Sternum : Shield-shaped; pale orange to orange, surface texture smooth, covered in short, fine setae; length 1.5 × width. Abdomen: Pale to mottled grey with yellow undertones; heartshaped with distinct notch anteriorly, tapering posteriorly; dorsal scutum absent; paired brown sigilla and intermediate sclerites present, varying between specimens, sometimes absent (Figs 1, 3); ventral sclerites on either side of epigyne; surface texture smooth, covered in short, fine setae. Legs: Light brown to orange; all segments covered with short, fine setae; dense scopulae on tarsi and distal part of metatarsi III and IV. Epigyne: Small median hood present, triangular; copulatory openings situated medially in short, inverted U-shaped ridges that are as long as broad (Figs 2, 4); entrance ducts twisted anteriorly before entering sausage-like ST II, extending posteriorly to approx. ⅔ of epigynal length (Fig. 4); ST I comprises two lateral bilobed receptacles linked to narrow fertilisation ducts (Fig. 5).

  • Holotype: ♀ SOUTH AFRICA: Eastern Cape: 3 km N of Paterson, 33°24.878′S 25°57.531′E, 23.iv.2010, C. Haddad, base of grass tussocks, roadside (TMSA 23763-A). Note: Holotype is the smallest specimen in the series; it is stored in a separate vial from the paratypes.

  • Paratypes: 3♀ 2 juveniles, same data as holotype (TMSA 23763-B).

  • Distribution: Known only from type locality (Fig. 6).

Figs 1–3.

Fuchibotulus haddadi sp. n., female: (1) dorsal habitus; (2) epigyne, ventral view; (3) abdomen with paired sigilla with several pairs of minute intermediate sclerites between them, dorsal view.


Figs 4, 5.

Epigyne of Fuchibotulus haddadi sp. n.: (4) ventral view, (5) dorsal view. Scale bar = 0.05 mm.


Fig. 6.

The known distribution of the genus Fuchibotulus Haddad & Lyle, 2008 in Southern Africa.


Key to species of Fuchibotulus (modified from Haddad & Lyle 2008)

1 Males 2

— Females 3

2 Embolus tip at of cymbium width; retrolateral tibial apophysis distinctly bifid (Haddad & Lyle 2008: fig. 62) bicornis

— Embolus tip at retrolateral margin of cymbium; distal retrolateral tibial apophysis triangular (Haddad & Lyle 2008: fig. 68) kigelia

3 ST II elongate, extending posteriorly beyond anterior margin of copulatory openings (Haddad & Lyle 2008: fig. 69) kigelia

— ST II oval-elongate, not extending to anterior margin of copulatory openings 4

4 ST II teardrop-shaped; copulatory openings situated medially in short, slightly curved slanted ridges, nearly twice as broad as long (Haddad & Lyle 2008: fig. 65) bicornis

— ST II only slightly narrower anteriorly; copulatory openings situated medially in short, very strongly curved U-shaped ridges, nearly as long as broad (Fig. 4) haddadi sp. n.


The genus Fuchibotulus is widely distributed, with F. bicornis from the Western Cape and F. kigelia from central and north-eastern South Africa and southern Mozambique being separated by approximately 1500 km (Haddad & Lyle 2008) (Fig. 6). The record of the new species in the Eastern Cape Province highlights insufficient knowledge on this genus, as well as the need for more intensive sampling for elusive genera like Fuchibotulus.

The recent advance of knowledge on tracheline spiders in the Afrotropical fauna has exposed the largely undescribed diversity of the subfamily (Haddad 2006; Lyle & Haddad 2006, 2009, 2010; Haddad & Lyle 2008; Lyle 2008,2011; Haddad et al. 2011). A large degree of variation in important morphological traits among various genera has strengthened the need to resolve the taxonomy of the subfamily. Once the taxonomy is resolved and all taxa are clearly defined, a phylogenetic study can be undertaken to determine relationships between the genera.


This work was funded by the National Research Foundation (NRF) of South Africa through the Thuthuka programme grant (TTK2008050500003) to Dr C. Haddad (University of the Free State). Any opinion, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author and therefore the NRF does not accept any liability in regard thereto. I thank Dr Martin Krüger (TMSA) for the loan of the material; Dr Ansie Dippenaar-Schoeman (Agricultural Research Council — Plant Protection Research Institute), Dr Jan Bosselaers and an anonymous referee for their discussions and comments on the manuscript; and Grant Martin from Carl Zeiss South Africa for allowing the author to use the Zeiss Axio Zoom V16 microscope.



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Robin Lyle "A New Species of the Tracheline Genus Fuchibotulus Haddad & Lyle, 2008 (Araneae: Corinnidae)," African Invertebrates 54(1), 245-249, (9 June 2013).
Published: 9 June 2013

Afrotropical Region
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