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1 August 2015 Revision of the Grass Huntsman Spider Genus Pseudomicrommata Järvi, 1914 (Araneae: Sparassidae) in the Afrotropical Region
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Abstract

The grass huntsman spider genus Pseudomicrommata Järvi, 1914 is revised in the Afrotropical Region, resulting in the recognition of four valid species. The type species, P. longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895) is redescribed and recorded from Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, South Africa and Namibia. Pseudomicrommata vittigera (Simon, 1897) stat. rev. (from South Africa and Namibia) is revalidated and its male described here for the first time. Two new species are described: P. mary sp. n. (male and female) from Guinea and Ivory Coast, and P. schoemanae sp. n. (female) from Cameroon.

INTRODUCTION

Despite being amongst the largest and most frequently encountered spiders, the huntsman spiders (family Sparassidae Bertkau, 1872) have been infrequently studied in Africa (e.g. Jäger & Kunz 2005; Moradmand 2013). To date, 33 sparassid genera have been reported from Africa, of which just four genera have been revised taxonomically, including Palystes L. Koch, 1875 (by Croeser 1996), Cebrennus Simon, 1880 (by Jäger 2000, 2014), Chrosioderma Simon, 1897 (by Silva 2005) and Eusparassus Simon, 1903 (by Moradmand & Jäger 2012; Moradmand 2013).

Pseudomicrommata Järvi, 1914 will be the fifth African genus to be studied at length and is revised here. Pseudomicrommata species are medium-sized Sparassidae strongly associated with vegetation, mostly grasslands and savannahs, hence the common name “grass huntsman spider”. The genus is easily distinguished from other African Sparassidae because of its unique coloration, with the body decorated by a single darker median stripe dorsally in contrast to the rest of the paler body. This kind of coloration can be observed in other foliage-dwelling Sparassidae, such as the species of the European genus Micrommata Latreille, 1804.

The systematic position of Pseudomicrommata within Sparassidae is not fully understood. Järvi (1914) placed Pseudomicrommata along with Eusparassus in his newly proposed subfamily Eusparassinae Järvi, 1914, using the characters of the female copulatory organs. Later, Jäger and Kunz (2003) added new somatic characters to those proposed by Järvi and proposed some other African genera to be included in Eusparassinae. Recent molecular analyses by Moradmand et al. (2014) suggested that Eusparassinae should be considered monotypic, with the genus Eusparassus as the subfamily name-bearing taxon. The remaining genera formerly included in Eusparassinae, including Pseudomicrommata, were recovered in a separate clade named the “African Clade”. The monophyly of the African Clade was not fully resolved, but a close relationship between Pseudomicrommata and the genus Arandisa Lawrence, 1938, a desert-dwelling Sparassidae endemic to southwestern Africa, was recovered (Moradmand et al. 2014).

Prior to this study, Pseudomicrommata was known as a monotypic genus, with its type species P. longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1985) described from Eastern Africa (World Spider Catalog 2015). Prior to this revision all individuals of Pseudomicrommata were thought to be P. longipes. After a taxonomic revision of the genus, using a large number of specimens from all its distribution range, I concluded that at least four different species are present in the Afrotropical Region. These four species are here diagnosed and (re)described.

MATERIAL AND METHODS

Specimens for this study were obtained from the main African spider collections in Europe and Africa (see the list of collections and curators). Morphological investigations were performed using a Leica MZ 165C stereomicroscope equipped with a drawing tube. Specimens were submerged in 70 % ethanol for examination, measurements and illustrations. The description methodology follows Moradmand (2013). Measurements are given in millimetres. The size classes of specimens are according to Jäger (2001) [small (3–10), medium (10–20)]. Details of the characters used for description and diagnosis are listed below.

The following abbreviations are used throughout the text: AB — anterior bands of epigynal field; ALE — anterior lateral eyes; AME — anterior median eyes; AMP — anterior margin of epigynal pocket; C — conductor; CD — copulatory duct; CO — copulatory opening; DK — field numbers used by Dirk Kunz; dRTA — dorsal RTA; EA — embolic apophysis; EF — epigynal field; EP — epigynal pocket; EM — embolus membrane; fTL — first turning loop; GPO — glandular pores; LL — lateral lobes; MS — median septum; PLE — posterior lateral eyes; PME — posterior median eyes; PMP — posterior margin of epigynal pocket; RTA — retrolateral tibial apophysis; SD — Sparassidae DNA numbers in SMF; SS — slit sensillum; sTL — second turning loop; T — tegulum; vRTA — ventral RTA; I–IV — 1st to 4th leg.

Material from the following museum collections was included in this study (curators are given in parentheses):

MNHN

Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle, Paris, France (Christine Rollard);

MRAC

Musée royal de l' Afrique centrale, Tervuren, Belgium (Rudy Jocqué, Christophe Allard);

NMSA

KwaZulu-Natal Museum, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa (Audrey Ndaba, Chrizelda Stoffels);

NCA

National Collection of Arachnida, Agricultural Research Council (ARC) — Plant Protection Research Institute, Pretoria, South Africa (Ansie Dippenaar-Schoeman, Petro Marais);

SAMC

Iziko South African Museum, Cape Town, South Africa (Dawn Larsen);

SMF

Senckenberg Research Institute, Frankfurt am Main, Germany (Julia Altmann, Peter Jäger);

ZMB

Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin, Germany (Anja Friederichs, Jason Dunlop);

ZMH

Zoological Museum, University of Hamburg, Germany (Hieronymus Dastych).

TAXONOMY

Family Sparassidae Bertkau, 1872
Genus Pseudomicrommata Järvi, 1914

  • Micrommata Latreille, 1804 [in part]: Bösenberg & Lenz 1895: 34, pl. 1, fig. 11; Simon 1897a: 490; Simon 1897b: 65, fig. 54; Lawrence 1927: 43, fig. 30; Lessert 1936: 271, figs 68–69 (misidentification).

  • Pseudomicrommata Järvi, 1914: 49, 162, pl. 3, figs 4–6, 40; Lawrence 1942: 168; Levy 1989: 163; Jäger & Kunz 2005: 168, figs 255–258, 262–267.

  • Type species: Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895), subsequent designation of genus by Järvi (1914) using the material of Simon, 1897b sub Micrommata vittigerum (junior synonym of P. longipes).

  • Extended and comparative diagnosis: Pseudomicrommata (and Arandisa) are distinguishable from other Sparassidae genera by a distinct pair of epigynal pockets (EP) in females, while the median septum (MS) is clearly visible throughout the epigynal field (EF) between the EP (e.g. Figs 8, 28, 33) (pocket-like structures present in the Asian genera Sinopoda Jäger, 1999 and Bhutaniella Jäger, 2000 too, but in a different morphology: MS, if present, is not extended into the anterior half of the EF). In males, Pseudomicrommata (and Arandisa) have an enlarged embolic apophysis (EA) originating from the median point of the embolus. The presence of a median dark stripe running the length of the dorsum (Fig. 1) clearly distinguishes Pseudomicrommata from its closest relative, Arandisa. Additionally, in Pseudomicrommata spp. the anterior lateral eyes (ALE) are usually the largest, while in Arandisa spp. the posterior lateral eyes (PLE) are distinctly the largest eyes. Moreover, Pseudomicrommata is diagnosable from Eusparassus by the presence of three pairs of ventral tibial spines on legs I–IV (two pairs in Eusparassus).

  • Redescription: Small to medium-sized Sparassidae; prosoma slightly longer than wide; opisthosoma elongated; leg formula IV II I III or IV II III I; two rows of eyes, with anterior row recurved and posterior row procurved, AME smallest, remaining eyes subequal (Fig. 6); chelicerae with two anterior and three to four posterior teeth, posterior row with first two larger and one or two smaller teeth, cheliceral furrow without denticles (Fig. 7); cheliceral basal segment (paturon) with single bristle at distal retromarginal end close to fang base (Fig. 19); male palp with embolus and tegulum forming “U”; EA well developed, embolus membrane (EM) present, conductor small and hyaline (Figs 3–5); tegulum with small projection at its transition part to embolus (Fig. 15); subtegulum not clearly visible; dorsal (dRTA) and ventral retrolateral tibial apophysis (vRTA) well developed, nearly the same length (Figs 3, 15, 23); female epigyne with epigynal EF longer than wide (Fig. 8) or as long as wide (Fig. 28); anterior bands of epigynal field (AB) mostly not (Fig. 20) or weakly developed (Fig. 11); median septum visible alongside epigynal field (e.g. Figs 8, 33); copulatory ducts (CD) elongated, a pair of parallel simple ducts comprising more than half of entire vulva; vulva in posterior half continuing with two turning loops, termed here first and second (f-, sTL), glandular pores present mostly on fTL (Figs 9, 10) or additionally on sTL (Figs 29, 30).

  • Coloration (live): Body background is pale grey or greenish-brown, with prosoma and opisthosoma decorated mid-dorsally with a reddish-brown stripe; additional longitudinal stripes present on the legs (Fig. 1).

  • Natural history and habitat preferences: Females construct a papery egg sac attached to grass leaves (one female specimen from NCA). The species were recorded mostly from savannah grasslands (Fig. 2), but also occur in bushes, small trees and leaf litter (male specimens in Guinea).

  • Distribution: Widely distributed in tropical Africa, including Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Congo, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Namibia, Botswana and South Africa.

  • Species included: Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895), P. vittigera (Simon, 1897) stat. rev., P. mary sp. n. and P. schoemanae sp. n.

  • Figs 1–2.

    (1) Habitus of Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895) from Ellisras, South Africa; (2) grasslands, the common habitat of Pseudomicrommata spp., in Ellisras, South Africa. Photos by Peter Webb.

    f01_425.jpg

    Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895)
    Figs 1, 314

  • Micrommata longipes Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895: 34, pl. 1, fig. 11 (♂ holotype: East Africa [exact locality not clear], 31.i.1896, leg. S.F. Stuhlmann, ZMH — examined); Lessert 1936: 271, figs 68–69.

  • Pseudomicrommata vittigera (Simon, 1897): Järvi 1914: 49, 162, pl. 3, figs 4–6, 40 (material from Kenya, misidentified); Lawrence 1942: 168 (in part, misidentification).

  • Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895): Levy 1989: 163; Jäger & Kunz 2005: 168, figs 255–258, 262–267.

  • Diagnosis: Males with diagnostic EA, which in ventral view is narrow proximally, widened medially and bifurcated distally (Figs 3, 5, 14). Females can be recognised (especially in comparison with closely similar P. vittigera) by the vulva equipped with several glandular pores (GPO) (Figs 9, 10, 12) and sTL extending beyond fTL laterally in dorsal view (Figs 9, 12).

  • Redescription:

  • Male (ranges: n=11, single measurements: holotype).

  • Measurements: Medium sized; total length 10.9–12.9, total length of holotype: 11.3, prosoma length 5.1–5.5, prosoma width 4.2–4.7, anterior width of prosoma 2.3–2.6, opisthosoma length 5.8–7.4, opisthosoma width 2.3–3.0. Eye diameters: AME 0.22, ALE 0.31, PME 0.24, PLE 0.30; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.15, AME-ALE 0.09, PME-PME 0.40, PME-PLE 0.30, AME-PME 0.75, ALE-PLE 0.42, clypeus height at AME 0.17, clypeus height at ALE 0.28.

  • Chelicerae: With 2 anterior and 3 posterior teeth (first two larger than the third one) (Fig. 7).

  • Legs: Leg formula: IV II I III. Palp 6.6 [2.6, 1.1, 0.5, 2.4], I 21.7 [6.1, 2.6, 5.2, 5.7, 2.1], II 23.8 [7.0, 2.8, 6.1, 5.9, 2.0], III 21.5 [6.2, 3.2, 5.0, 5.1, 2.0], IV 23.3 [7.1, 2.4, 5.8, 5.9, 2.1].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 001/101, 1211; Legs: Femur I–III 323, IV 321/322; Patella I–IV 000/101; Tibia I–IV 2126/2226; Metatarsus I–III 2024, IV 3036.

  • Palp: As in diagnosis, with dRTA pointed and vRTA rounded at distal end in ventral view (Fig. 3), both with the same length (Figs 3, 4); cymbium more than 2 times longer than tibia (Fig. 4).

  • Female (ranges: n=20, single measurements: MRAC 211305 from Tanzania).

  • Measurements: Medium sized; total length 15.3–18.3, prosoma length 5.8–6.5, prosoma width 4.7–5.1, anterior width of prosoma 2.8–3.1, opisthosoma length 9.5–11.8, opisthosoma width 4.1–6.0. Eye diameters: AME 0.34, ALE 0.48, PME 0.44, PLE 0.46; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.21, AME-ALE 0.08, PME-PME 0.56, PME-PLE 0.37, AME-PME 0.85, ALE-PLE 0.52, clypeus AME 0.27, clypeus ALE 0.38. Chelicerae: As in males.

  • Legs: Leg formula: IV II I III. Measurements of palp and legs. Palp 6.9 [2.0, 1.1, 1.3, 2.5], I 19.8 [6.5, 3.0, 4.9, 5.0, 2.0], II 21.4 [6.5, 3.0, 4.9, 5.0, 2.0], III 19.0 [6.0, 2.7, 4.3, 4.4, 1.6], IV 21.8 [6.7, 2.6, 5.2, 5.6, 1.8].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 001/101, 1013; Legs: Femur I–III 323, IV 321/322; Patella I–IV 000/101; Tibia I–IV 1016/2026; Metatarsus I–III 0004/1014/2024, IV 3036.

  • Epigyne/vulva: As in diagnosis (Figs 813), with AMP slightly longer than PMP (for more details the genus redescription).

  • Other material examined: BOTSWANA: Palapaye, 23.xii.1980, leg. P. Reavell, on herbs, 1♂ (NCA 81/82). KENYA: Eastern Prov.: Kibwezi, 23–24.xii.1905, leg. K.P. Scheffler, grassland steppes, 2♂ 5♀ 5 imm. (ZMB 31331). NAMIBIA: Kunene: Annabis Farm, 20°00′S, 14°38′E, 23–24.ii.1969, leg. B. Lamoral & R. Day, with egg sac attached to grass, 1♀ (NMSA 11526). SOUTH AFRICA: Free State Prov.: Brandfort district, Amanzi Private Game Reserve, 28°36.042′S 26°25.791′E, 17.xii.2010, leg. C. Haddad & V. Butler, canopy fogging, Olea europea africana, canopy height 8 m, 10:00 am, 1♀ (SD742, SMF); same locality, 28°35.435′S, 26°26.157′E, 1425 m, 25.x.2011, leg. C. Haddad, 1♂ (SD1117, SMF). Gauteng Prov.: Roodeplaat Dam, 20.xi.1991, leg. A. Leroy, in grass, 1♀ (NCA 92/164). KwaZulu-Natal Prov.: Maritzburg (=Pietermaritzburg), ii.1945, 4♀ (NMSA 4309); Ndumo Game Reserve, 26°54.425′S 32°19.191′E, 11.ii.2005, post AFRAS 2005 excursion, leg. D. Kunz, 1♀ (DK323, SMF); same data as previous but 26°53.025′S 32°10.050′E, 8.ii.2005, 1♀ (DK298, SMF); same data as previous but 26°54.425′S 32°19.191′E, 5.ii.2005, 1♂ (DK269, SMF); Ndumo Game Reserve, 28.xi.1973, 1♂ (NMSA 20171); Pietermaritzburg, Ashburton, 27.i.1982, under brick in Acacia karroo veld, 1♂ (NMSA 20170); Nyala Game Reserve, 12.xii.1980, in dense grass at side of path, 1♀ (NMSA 20171); Zululand, Mfongosi, ii.1918, leg. W.E. Gonzo, 1♀ (misidentified as Micrommata vittigera, Lawrence det.) (SAMC B4023). Limpopo Prov.: Tuinplaas, Springbokvlakte, Settlers (Tweekaansen), 19.xii.2002, leg. M. van Jaarsveld, 1♂ (NCA 2003/1322); Nylsvley Nature Reserve, 6.iii.1998, leg. J. Leeming, on grass, sweep net, 1♀ (NCA 98/570); Farm Rochdale, between Waterpoort and Louis Trichardt IV, slopes of Soutpansberg, 4.xii.1998, leg. W. Croucamp, 1♀ (NCA 2001/308). North West Prov.: Barberspan, xii.1990, leg. K. Morgan, in passage of house, 1♂ (NCA 91/812); same data as previous but 2.ii.1991, 1♀ (NCA 91/813). TANZANIA: Mkomazi Game Reserve, Igire Ridge, 15.iii.1995, leg. A. Russell-Smith, grassland, 2♂ 1♀ (MRAC 211305).

  • Known geographical distribution: Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, South Africa and Namibia (Fig. 40).

  • Remarks: For a long time P. longipes was thought to be the only species of Pseudomicrommata widespread in tropical Africa. Recent molecular investigation (Moradmand et al. 2014) revealed a clue, that in spite of similarity in morphology between species in South Africa and Guinea (in particular females), considerable genetic distance can be observed (see Moradmand et al. 2014: fig. 3).

  • Figs 3–7.

    Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895), male, Tanzania (MRAC): (3–5) left palp: (3) ventral view, (4) retrolateral view and (5) tip of embolus, embolic apophysis and conductor, ventral view; (6) eye arrangement; (7) left chelicera, ventral view. Abbreviations: C — conductor; dRTA — dorsal retrolateral tibial apophysis; E — embolus; EA — embolic apophysis; EM — embolus membrane; ET — embolus tip; H — haematodocha; T — tegulum; vRTA — ventral retrolateral tibial apophysis.

    f03_425.jpg

    Figs 8–10.

    Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895), female, Tanzania (MRAC): (8) epigyne, ventral view; (9) vulva, dorsal view; (10) left vulva, anterio-dorso-lateral view. Abbreviations: AMP — anterior margin of epigynal pocket; CD — copulatory duct; CO — copulatory opening; EF — epigynal field; EP — epigynal pocket; FD — fertilization duct; fTL — first turning loop; GPO — glandular pores; LL — lateral lobes; MS — median septum; PMP — posterior margin of epigynal pocket; SS — slit sensillum; sTL — second turning loop.

    f08_425.jpg

    Figs 11–14.

    Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895), (11–13) female, Barberspan, South Africa (NCA) and (14) male, Brandfort, South Africa (SMF): (11) epigyne, ventral view; (12) vulva, dorsal view; (13) schematic course of internal duct system; (14) tip of embolus, embolic apophysis and conductor, ventral view. Abbreviation: AB — anterior bands of epigynal field; for others see Figs 8–10.

    f11_425.jpg

    Pseudomicrommata vittigera (Simon, 1897), stat. rev.
    Figs 1522

  • Micrommata vittigerum Simon, 1897b: 65, fig. 54 (two ♀ syntypes: SOUTH AFRICA: Transvaal, MNHN 17.031 — examined); Simon 1897a: 490.

  • Micrommata ovambica Lawrence, 1927: 43, fig. 30 (♀ holotype: NAMIBIA: Ovamboland, N of Ondungua, Mafa, 1923, leg. R.F. Lawrence, SAMC B6752 — examined) (synonymy by Lawrence 1942).

  • Pseudomicrommata vittigera (Simon, 1897): Levy 1989: 163 (emendation, unjustified synonymy with P. longipes); Lawrence 1942: 168 (in part).

  • Pseudomicrommata longipes (Bösenberg & Lenz, 1895): Jäger & Kunz 2005: 168, figs 262–267 (♀ misidentified).

  • Diagnosis: Males with clearly distinguishable EA having two spoon-shaped projections (Figs 15–17). Female vulva with sTL not extending laterally beyond fTL in dorsal view (Fig. 21) otherwise similar to P. longipes.

  • Description:

  • Male (ranges: n = 2, single measurements: NCA 98/357).

  • Measurements: Small sized; total length 8.8, prosoma length 4.5, prosoma width 3.8, anterior width of prosoma 2.2, opisthosoma length 4.3, opisthosoma width 2.4. Eye diameters: AME 0.25, ALE 0.38, PME 0.31, PLE 0.35; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.13, AME-ALE 0.04, PME-PME 0.32, PME-PLE 0.24, AME-PME 0.51, ALE-PLE 0.21, clypeus height at AME 0.28, clypeus height at ALE 0.32.

  • Chelicerae: With 2 anterior and 3 posterior teeth (two large and one smaller) (Fig. 19). Legs: Leg formula: IV II III=I. Measurements of palp and legs. Palp 4.8 [1.5, 0.8, 0.7, 1.8], I 16.0 [4.6, 2.1, 3.8, 4.1, 1.4], II 17.9 [5.2, 2.2, 4.5, 4.6, 1.4], III 16.0 [4.8, 1.7, 4.0, 4.1, 1.4], IV 18.6 [5.5, 1.7, 4.7, 5.3, 1.4].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 101, 2121; Legs: Femur I–III 223/323, IV 323; Patella I–IV 101; Tibia I–IV 2126/2226; Metatarsus I–III 2024, IV 3036.

  • Palp: As in diagnosis, with cymbium two times longer than tibia; the transition part of tegulum to embolus with a clear process, an additional retrolateral hump-like process present on tegulum (Fig. 15); vRTA much shorter than dRTA, both pointed distally (Figs 15, 16).

  • Female (ranges: n = 6, single measurements: syntype).

  • Measurements: Medium sized; total length 11.3–13.5, prosoma length 4.7–5.5, prosoma width 4.1–4.6, anterior width of prosoma 2.5–3.6, opisthosoma length 6.6–8.0, opisthosoma width 3.5–4.0. Eye diameters: AME 0.28, ALE 0.40, PME 0.33, PLE 0.34; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.15, AME-ALE 0.05, PME-PME 0.41, PME-PLE 0.32, AME-PME 0.47, ALE-PLE 0.34, clypeus AME 0.31, clypeus ALE 0.36.

  • Chelicerae: As in males.

  • Legs: Leg formula: IV II III I. Measurements of palp and legs. Palp 6.1 [1.8, 0.9, 1.2, 2.2], I 16.1 [4.8, 2.3, 3.9, 3.8, 1.3], II 17.9 [5.7, 2.4, 4.1, 4.3, 1.4], III 16.3 [5.2, 2.3, 3.7, 3.8, 1.3], IV 18.8 [5.8, 2.3, 4.1, 5.2, 1.4].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 001/101, 2120/2120, 1013; Legs: Femur I–III 223/323, IV 321/322; Patella I–IV 000/101; Tibia I–IV 1016/2026; Metatarsus I–III 0004/2024, IV 0006/3036.

  • Epigyne/vulva: As in diagnosis, with sTL much smaller than fTL; GPO only present on fTL (Figs 20–22) (for more details see the genus redescription).

  • Other material examined: SOUTH AFRICA: Limpopo Prov.: Letsitele Kraal, Nelspruit, 27.ii.1976, leg. A.S. Dippenaar, with egg sacs on grasses, 2♀ (NCA 76/125); Rietbokpan, Pafuri (near Kruger National Park) [22.93°S 31.02°E], 13.i.1996, leg. A. Leroy, 1♂ (NCA 98/357); same data as previous, on plant, 1♂ (NCA 2001/100). Mpumalanga Prov.: 2D Ranch, Loskop Dam Nature Reserve, 27.ii.1994, leg. A. Leroy, 1♀ (NCA 2001/101).

  • Remarks: P. vittigera stat. rev. was previously known only from females and the male is described here for the first time. The male characters confirm that P. vittigera stat. rev. must be considered a valid species and be withdrawn from the junior synonymy of P. longipes. Diagnosing species status solely on females is not an easy task, which is the reason why previous taxonomists decided to synonymise this species with the more widespread P. longipes. This conclusion might also be applied to P. ovambica (Lawrence, 1927) from Namibia. However, until its potential male is discovered and described, this species should remain a junior synonym of P. vittigera.

    Known geographical distribution: South Africa and Namibia, although latter records are unlikely to be conspecific (Fig. 40).

  • Figs 15–19.

    Pseudomicrommata vittigera (Simon, 1897), male, Pafuri, South Africa (NCA): (15–17) left palp: (15) ventral view, (16) retrolateral view and (17) tip of embolus, embolic apophysis and conductor, ventral view; (18) eye arrangement; (19) left chelicera, ventral view.

    f15_425.jpg

    Figs 20–22.

    Pseudomicrommata vittigera (Simon, 1897), female syntype, Transvaal, South Africa (MNHN): (20) epigyne, ventral view; (21) vulva, dorsal view; (22) left vulva, anterio-dorso-lateral view.

    f20_425.jpg

     Pseudomicrommata mary sp. n.
    Figs 2332

  • Etymology: This species is dedicated to my wife Maryam (nickname: Mary), for all her love and support; noun in apposition.

  • Diagnosis: Males distinguished easily from other congeners by the EA narrow proximally, widened medially and pointed distally in ventral view (embolus tip is not as bifid as in P. longipes) (Figs 23, 25); in females, epigyne with PMP longer than AMP (Figs 28, 31) and vulva clearly with additional GPO on sTL (besides those on fTL) (Figs 29, 30, 32), currently unique amongst the known species.

  • Description:

  • Male (ranges: n = 11, single measurements: holotype).

  • Measurements (holotype largest): Medium sized; total length 10.9–12.9, prosoma length 4.5–4.8, prosoma width 4.2–4.7, anterior width of prosoma 2.0–2.2, opisthosoma length 5.4–6.1, opisthosoma width 2.5–3.2. Eye diameters: AME 0.22, ALE 0.38, PME 0.34, PLE 0.33; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.14, AME-ALE 0.04, PME-PME 0.38, PME-PLE 0.34, AME-PME 0.64, ALE-PLE 0.28, clypeus height at AME 0.24, clypeus height at ALE 0.31.

  • Chelicerae: With 2 anterior and 4 posterior teeth (first two larger with two additional smaller ones) (Fig. 27).

  • Legs: Leg formula: IV II I III. Palp 6.1 [1.8, 0.7, 1.0, 2.6], I 17.8 [5.1, 2.4, 4.3, 4.4, 1.6], II 19.1 [5.6, 2.4, 4.7, 4.7, 1.7], III 16.9 [5.2, 2.1, 4.1, 3.9, 1.6], IV 19.3 [5.8, 1.9, 4.7, 5.2, 1.7].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 101, 2121/2111; Legs: Femur I–III 323, IV 321/322; Patella I–IV 000/101; Tibia I–IV 2126/2226; Metatarsus I–III 2024, IV 3036.

  • Palp: As in diagnosis, with cymbium nearly three times longer than tibia, dRTA distally pointed, vRTA distally hump-like, subtegulum not visible (Figs 23, 24); EA membranous and hyaline proximally, hard and sclerotized distally (Fig. 25).

  • Female (ranges: n=8, single measurements: SD 1105).

  • Measurements: Medium sized; total length 11.8–15.9, prosoma length 4.5–5.1, prosoma width 3.7–4.2, anterior width of prosoma 2.1–2.4, opisthosoma length 7.3–10.8, opisthosoma width 3.1–5.7. Eye diameters: AME 0.25, ALE 0.38, PME 0.36, PLE 0.34; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.18, AME-ALE 0.04, PME-PME 0.37, PME-PLE 0.32, AME-PME 0.68, ALE-PLE 0.32, clypeus AME 0.16, clypeus ALE 0.22.

  • Chelicerae: As in males.

  • Legs: Leg formula: IV II I III. Measurements of palp and legs. Palp 5.3 [1.4, 0.9, 1.1, 1.9], I 15.0 [4.4, 2.1, 3.5, 3.6, 1.4], II 16.1 [4.9, 2.2, 3.8, 3.7, 1.5], III 14.2 [4.5, 1.8, 3.3, 3.2, 1.4], IV 16.2 [5.0, 1.8, 3.8, 4.1, 1.5].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 001/101, 2121, 1113; Legs: Femur I–III 323, IV 321/322; Patella I–IV 000/101; Tibia I–IV 1016/2026; Metatarsus I–III 0004/2024, IV 3036.

  • Epigyne/vulva: As in diagnosis, with EF nearly as wide as long; AMP bending posteriorly (Fig. 28), sTL extending beyond fTL in lateral view (Figs 29, 32) (for more details see the genus redescription).

  • Holotype ♂: GUINEA: Prefecture de Lola: Mount Nimba, SE Gbakole, Plateau de Zouguépo, 07°43′N, 08°24′W, 500 m, 26.i.1952, leg. M. Lamotte, Nº 19 (SMF).

  • Paratypes: Same data as holotype, 2♀ (SMF); Same data as holotype but 15.iii.1957, Nº 50, 4♂ 4♀ (SMF); Same data as holotype but 21.i.1957, Nº 18, 2♂ (SMF); Mount Nimba, Ga forest, 746 m, 6.ii.2012, leg. A. Henrard, C. Allard, P. Bimou & M. Sidibé, sieving soil litter, primary forest, 1♀ (MRAC 238760, SD 1105); Mount Nimba, Kpéléyi Savannah, 572 m, 7.iii.2012, leg. A. Henrard, C. Allard, P. Bimou & M. Sidibé, pitfall traps, 1♂ (MRAC 238965). IVORY COAST: Adiope Doumé (Orstom), 15–20.viii.1968, leg. J.J. van Mol, 1♀ (MRAC 134636, MM); N of Korhogo, Bandama River, iii.1980, leg. J. Everts, edge riverine forest, 2♂ (MRAC 172141-2); Bouaflé, 22.i.1981, leg. J. Everts, pitfall traps, 1♂ (MRAC 174220).

  • Remarks: The type specimens were collected in 1952 and 1957 by mammologist Prof Dr M. Lamotte during his investigation in Mount Nimba of Guinea. A large number of spiders were donated to SMF in 1960 and kept in the collection. Mount Nimba is one of the main biodiversity hotspots in western Africa with a high level of endemicity (Lamotte & Roy 2003). It seems that P. mary sp. n. is the first of this rich collection to be described as a new species.

  • Known geographical distribution: Recorded from Mount Nimba and surrounding areas in Guinea and Ivory Coast (Fig. 40).

  • Figs 23–27.

    Pseudomicrommata mary sp. n., male holotype, Mt Nimba, Guinea (SMF): (23–25) left palp, (23) ventral view, (24) retrolateral view and (25) tip of embolus, embolic apophysis and conductor, ventral view; (26) eye arrangement; (27) left chelicera, ventral view.

    f23_425.jpg

    Figs 28–30.

    Pseudomicrommata mary sp. n., female paratype, Mt Nimba, Guinea (MRAC): (28) epigyne, ventral view; (29) vulva, dorsal view; (30) left vulva, anterio-dorso-lateral view.

    f28_425.jpg

    Figs 31–32.

    Pseudomicrommata mary sp. n., female paratype, Adiope Doumé, Ivory Coast (MRAC): (31) epigyne, ventral view; (32) vulva, dorsal view.

    f31_425.jpg

    Pseudomicrommata schoemanae sp. n.
    Figs 3339

  • Etymology: This species is named in honour of Dr Ansie Dippenaar-Schoeman for her significant contributions to African arachnology and her assistance to my studies on African Sparassidae; noun in a genitive case.

  • Diagnosis: This is the only Pseudomicrommata species with a generally elongated epigyne; the enlarged epigynal pockets (EP) occupy the majority of the epigynal field (EF) space, which is unique amongst the currently known species (Figs 33, 38).

  • Male unknown.

  • Description:

  • Female (ranges: n=4, single measurements: holotype).

  • Measurements (Holotype largest): Medium sized; total length 11.4–13.2, prosoma length 4.8–5.5, prosoma width 4.1–4.7, anterior width of prosoma 2.4–2.6, opisthosoma length 6.6–7.7, opisthosoma width 3.5–4.5. Eye diameters: AME 0.21, ALE 0.43, PME 0.36, PLE 0.35; eye interdistances: AME-AME 0.20, AME-ALE 0.06, PME-PME 0.42, PME-PLE 0.32, AME-PME 0.71, ALE-PLE 0.36, clypeus AME 0.20, clypeus ALE 0.28.

  • Chelicerae: Chelicerae with 2 anterior and 4 posterior teeth (two larger and two smaller ones) (Fig. 37).

  • Legs: Leg formula: IV II I III. Measurements of palp and legs. Palp 6.4 [1.4, 0.7, 1.1, 2.2], I 17.4 [5.1, 2.5, 4.1, 4.2, 1.5], II 18.2 [5.6, 2.4, 4.4, 4.3, 1.5], III 16.2 [5.2, 2.1, 3.8, 3.7, 1.4], IV 18.4 [5.6, 2.1, 4.4, 4.8, 1.5].

  • Spination: Palp 131, 101, 2121, 1013; Legs: Femur I–III 323, IV 321; Patella I–IV 000/101; Tibia I–IV 1016/2026; Metatarsus I–III 0004/1014/2024, IV 3036.

  • Epigyne/vulva: As in diagnosis, with generally enlarged and elongated EF, posterior part of LL behind PMP small (Figs 33, 38); CD enlarged and expanded, partially covering fTLs; sTL usually extend beyond fTL laterally (Figs 34, 39), GPO present only on fTLs (Figs 34, 35).

  • Holotype ♀: CAMEROON: North Prov.: Bossoum, 09°56′33″N 13°41′51″E, 11.iv.1914, leg. G. Tessmann (ZMB 48632).

  • Paratypes: CAMEROON: Same data as holotype, 2♀ (ZMB 48633), 1♀ (SMF).

  • Remarks: The type material for this study was collected by the German botanist G.

  • Tessmann (1884–1969) during his expedition to Cameroon in 1914.

  • Known geographical distribution: Only known from the type locality (Fig. 40).

  • Figs 33–37.

    Pseudomicrommata schoemanae sp. n., female holotype, Bossoum, Cameroon (ZMB): (33) epigyne, ventral view; (34) vulva, dorsal view; (35) left vulva, anterio-dorso-lateral view; (36) eye arrangement; (37) left chelicera, ventral view.

    f33_425.jpg

    Figs 38–39.

    Pseudomicrommata schoemanae sp. n., female paratype, Bossoum, Cameroon (SMF): (38) epigyne, ventral view; (39) vulva, dorsal view.

    f38_425.jpg

    Fig. 40.

    Currently known distribution of Pseudomicrommata species.

    f40_425.jpg

    ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

    I acknowledge the authorities of the University of Isfahan, in particular the Office of Research Affairs, for their support in providing facilities for my scientific short visit (July 2014) to the Senckenberg Research Institute, Frankfurt am Main (SMF), Germany. I am thankful to Dr Peter Jäger for his cooperation during my visit to the Arachnology lab. As with my prior work, Mrs Julia Altmann (SMF) was a great help in sorting material and translating old, handwritten labels, for which I am very thankful. I thank my friend Dr Hossein Rajaei (ZMH) for his help during my visit to the Arachnid collection at the University of Hamburg. I am grateful to Dr Jason Dunlop and Mrs Anja Friederichs (ZMB) for granting me access to the rich collection of spiders under their curation. A main part of the material was loaned to me during my visit (2012) to the MRAC African spider collection (Tervuren), supported by the SYNTHESYS Project ( http://www.synthesys.info/), which is financed by the European Community Research Infrastructure Action under the FP7 “Capacities” Program. Dr Ansie Dippenaar-Schoeman and Dr Charles Haddad supported this research with their comments, and Mr Peter Webb with good quality photos, for which I am very thankful. The two referees, Dr Cristina Rheims and Dr Peter Jäger, are thanked for their constructive suggestions that improved the manuscript.

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    Majid Moradmand "Revision of the Grass Huntsman Spider Genus Pseudomicrommata Järvi, 1914 (Araneae: Sparassidae) in the Afrotropical Region," African Invertebrates 56(2), (1 August 2015). https://doi.org/10.5733/afin.056.0213
    Published: 1 August 2015
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