31 December, 2012

Euscorpius croaticus from Croatia raised to species status

"Hidden" Euscorpius species are still waiting to be discovered in Europe, especially in Greece and in the Balkans. Matthew Graham and co-workers have now raised Euscorpius germanus croaticus Di Caporiacco, 1950 (Euscorpiidae) to species status based on molecular and morphological evidence.

Euscorpius croaticus Di Caporiacco, 1950

Abstract:
The taxonomic identity of Euscorpius germanus croaticus Di Caporiacco, 1950, described from Croatia and Bosnia, has remained unclear ever since its discovery. We studied the lectotype from the Velebit Mountains as well as new material from Biserujka Cave on Krk Island, Croatia. We reassessed E. g. croaticus using both morphology and DNA barcodes (cox1 sequences) from one of the Biserujka Cave specimens and 15 congeneric species. The resulting DNA phylogeny suggests that E. g. croaticus is not a subspecies of E. germanus. The taxon appears to be a separate lineage, which groups close to subgenus Alpiscorpius but differs from all its members in several morphological characters. We elevate E. g. croaticus to species rank as Euscorpius croaticus Di Caporiacco, 1950, stat. nov., and provide a detailed redescription of both sexes.

Reference:
Graham MR, Webber MM, Blagoev G, Ivanova N, Fet V. Molecular and morphological evidence supports the elevation of Euscorpius germanus croaticus Di Caporiacco, 1950 (Scorpiones: Euscorpiidae) to E. Croaticus Stat. Nov., a rare species from croatia. Revista Iberica de Arachnologia. 2012 (21):41-50.

Thanks to Professor Victor Fet for sending me this paper!

Family Euscorpiidae

A new species of Isometrus from Laos

Wilson Lourenco and Elise-Anne Leguin have recently described a new species of Isometrus Ehrenberg, 1828 (Buthidae) from Laos.

Isometrus lao Lourenco & Leguin, 2012

Abstract:
A new species, Isometrus (Reddyanus) lao sp. n., is described from the northern region of Luang-Prabang, Laos. Differences in coloration and morphometric values of the Isometrus species described from Southeast Asia attest to a micro-endemic distribution pattern. Comments on the other Isometrus species of Southeast Asia are proposed and comparative illustrations and morphometric values are also added.

Reference:
Lourenco WR, Leguin E-A. A new species of Isometrus Ehrenberg, 1828 (Scorpiones: Buthidae) from Laos. Acta Arachnologica. 2012;61(2):71-6.

Thanks to Professor Lourenco for sending me his article!

Family Buthidae

A new Buthus from Cameroon

Professor Wilson Lourenco and co-workers are still unraveling the mysteries of the African "Buthus occitanus species complex". This time a new species of Buthus Leach, 1815 (Buthidae) is described from Cameroon.

Buthus prudenti Lourenco & Leguin, 2012

Abstract:
A new species belonging to the genus Buthus Leach (Scorpiones: Buthidae) is described from northern Cameroon in Central Western Africa. The new species can be included in the “Buthus occitanus” complex of species, and probably can be associated with the “Buthus occitanus” from the former French West Africa (AOF) previously reported by Vachon from this large region. This is the first record of a Buthus species from Cameroon, and with the description of Buthus prudenti sp. n., the status of one more population of Buthus spp. from the sub-Saharan region of Africa is clarified.

Reference:
Lourenco WR, Leguin E-A. A New Species of the Genus Buthus (Scorpiones: Buthidae) from Northern Cameroon. Euscorpius. 2012 (152):1-9.[Free full text]

Family Buthidae

21 December, 2012

A new Ananteris from Surinam

Another Christmas scorpion species from professor Wilson Lourenco. This time he reports of a new species of Ananteris Thorell, 1891 (Buthidae) from Surinam.

Ananteris surinamensis Lourenco, 2012

Abstract:
A new species of the genus Ananteris Thorell has been discovered in Suriname. Ananteris surinamensis sp. n. is described from a single female collected in the region of ‘Serra de Tumucumaque’ on the border with the state of Pará, Brazil. This is the frst record of a species of Ananteris from Suriname. The number of Ananteris species described from the Guyanas region is raised to seven.

Reference:
Lourenco WR. The genus Ananteris Thorell, 1891 (Scorpiones, Buthidae) in Guyanas region, with a description of a new species from Suriname. Entomologische Mitteilungen aus dem Zoologischen Museum Hamburg. 2012;16(188):41-7.

Thanks to professor Lourenco for sending me his paper!

Family Buthidae

A new Grosphus from Madagascar

Madagascar is a gold mine for scorpion diversity and professor Wilson Lourenco has now described a new species of Grosphus Simon, 1880 (Buthidae) from the island.

Grosphus bicolor Lourenco, 2012

Abstract:
The southwestern portion of Madagascar appears to have one of the highest levels of scorpion diversity on the island and in two previous publications an analysis of the known species of Grosphus from this region was presented. One more new species, Grosphus bicolor sp. n. is described from dry spiny bush in inland region, between Ranohira and Llakaka.

References:
Lourenco WR. A new species of Grosphus Simon, 1880 (Scorpiones: Buthidae) from the Southwest of Madagascar. entomologische Mitteilungen aus dem Zoologischen Museum Hamburg. 2012;16(188):33-40.

Thanks to professor Lourenco for sending me his paper!

Family Buthidae

Habitat distribution and seasonality of Paruroctonus boreus in Washington State

Paruroctonus boreus (Girard, 1854) (Vaejovidae) is a widespread species in western United State and Canada, and is the most northern scorpion in North America. Richard Zack and Chris Looney have published a study on habitat distribution and seasonality of this species in southcentral Washington State.

Abstract:
The northern scorpion, Paruroctonus boreus (Girard 1854) is recorded from big sage climax, sand dune, cheatgrass dominated, and partially disturbed big sage habitats on the Hanford Nuclear Site, located in southcentral Washington State. Based on a pitfall trapping survey, the species was most commonly encountered in partially disturbed big sage habitat and rarely found in cheatgrass dominated plant communities. A total of 127 specimens were taken with the earliest collection made 20–28 March and the latest 9–24 October. Habitat occurrence on the Hanford Site is compared with comparable studies at other locations. The possible negative effect of cheatgrass invasion on scorpion occurrence is discussed.

Reference:
Zack RS, Looney C. Habitat distribution and seasonality of the northern scorpion, Paruroctonus boreus (Girard) (Scorpiones: Vaejovidae), at the Hanford Site, southcentral Washington State. Pan-Pacific Entomologist. 2012;88(3):292-8. [Subscription required for full text]

17 December, 2012

Morphological investigations of five species from Venezuela

Walter Bechara and Jonathan Liria have published a paper on geometric morphometrics in five species of Buthidae and Scorpionidae from Venezuela. The paper is in Spanish and I have only read the English abstract which is presented below.


Reference:
Bechara WY, Liria J. Morfometría geométrica en cinco especies de Buthidae y Scorpionidae (Arachnida: Scorpiones) de Venezuela. Revista Mexicana de Biodiversidad. 2012;83:421-31. [Free full text]

Thanks to Walter Bechara for sending me a link to the full text of the paper!

A new Vaejovis from Mexico

Erwin Pabel Miranda-Lopez and co-workers have recently described a species of Vaejovis Koch, 1836 (Vaejovidae) from Morelia, Michocan in Mexico.

Vaejovis morelia Miranda-Lopez, Ponce-Saavedra & Francke, 2012

Abstract:
Vaejovis morelia sp. nov. from Morelia, Michoacán, Mexico is described. This species belongs to the mexicanus group (sensu Sissom, 2000), and is morphologically similar to V. pusillus Pocock, 1898 and V. dzahui Santibañez y Francke 2010, species from mountainous zones, and with which it is compared.

Reference:
Miranda-Lopez EP, Ponce-Saavedra J, Francke OF. Una especie nueva de Vaejovis (Scorpiones: Vaejovidae) del centro de México. Revista Mexicana de Biodiversidad. 2012;83:966-75.

Thanks to Gerard Dupre for sending me this paper!

Family Vaejovidae

11 December, 2012

A new Hemiscorpius from Southwestern Iran

Aysergül Karatas and Muhammed Gharkheloo have described a new species in the genus Hemiscorpius Peters, 1861 (Hemiscorpiidae) from Southwestern Iran.

Hemiscorpius kashkayi Karatas & Gharkheloo, 2013

This is the sixth species in this genus reported from Iran. Knowledge on the taxonomy of this genus is very important as it has high medical importance and it is possible that other species than the well known Hemiscorpius lepturus may cause serious morbidity in humans.

Abstract:
A new Hemiscorpius species, H. kashkayi sp. nov., is described from the Khuzestan and Ahwaz region in southwestern Iran. H. kashkayi is related to H. persicus Birula, 1903, known from Baluchestan in eastern Iran, which does not show sexual dimorphism between males and females, like H. kashkayi. These 2 species differ from all other Iranian Hemiscorpiidae species in having no sexual dimorphism. H. kashkayi is distinguished from H. persicus by its relatively short and well-developed stout metasoma and pedipalp segments, less well-developed patellar process, and carapacial and mesosomal carination.

Reference:

Karatas A, Gharkheloo MM. A new Hemiscorpius Peters, 1861 (Scorpiones: Hemiscorpiidae) from southwestern Iran. Turkish Journal of Arachnology. 2013;37:1-9. [Free full text]

Thanks to Gerard Dupre for sending me this paper!

Family Hemiscorpiidae