20 October, 2010

Two new Hottentotta species from Oman

Graeme Lowe is continuing his study of the scorpion fauna of the Middle East. This time he reports of two new species of Hottentotta (Buthidae) from northern Oman:

Hottentotta pellucidus Lowe, 2010
Hottentotta saxinatans Lowe, 2010

Two new endemic species of Hottentotta Birula, 1908, are described from the Al Hajar Mountains of northern Oman: H. pellucidus sp. nov., from the Shir Plateau of Jabal Bani Jabir in the eastern Al Hajar, characterized by: medium size, uniform yellow color, dense cover of long and short macrosetae on pedipalps, legs and metasoma, only two macrosetae on tergite posterior margins, and slender male pedipalp chelae with very weakly scalloped fingers; and H. saxinatans sp. nov., from Jabal Akhdar in the western Al Hajar, characterized by: medium size, uniform yellow color with faint fuscosity on metasomal carinae, nearly bare body and appendages with few short macrosetae, and slender male pedipalp chelae with unscalloped fingers. Both are lapidicolous or lithophilic scorpions, inhabiting very rocky terrain. Their disjunct distribution in high altitude refugia suggests that they are relict species, descendents of a more widespread fauna adapted to temperate climates in the Pleistocene or post-glacial times.

Lowe G. Two new species of Hottentotta Birula, 1908 (Scorpiones: Buthidae) from northern Oman. Euscorpius. 2010(103):1-23. [Free fulltext]

Family Buthidae

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