08 August, 2011

Orthochirus in Africa and three new species

Wilson Lourenco and Elise-Anne Leguin have studied Orthochirus Karsch, 1891 (Buthidae) material from Africa and have revised the descriptions for O. aristidis (Simon, 1882) and O. innesi Simon, 1910. In addition, they have described three new species in the genus from northern Africa.

Orthochirus atarensis Lourenco & Leguin, 2011 (Mauritania)
Orthochirus cloudsleythompsoni Lourenco & Leguin, 2011 (Morocco)
Orthochirus tassili Lourenco & Leguin, 2011 (Algeria)

A key to the five African species of Orthochirus is given.

New considerations are proposed regarding the African species of the genus Orthochirus Karsch, 1891. Two species, Orthochirus aristidis (Simon, 1882) and Orthochirus innesi Simon, 1910 have been the subject of several publications in the past decades; however, doubts remain about their exact identity and range of geographical distribution. In this note, their taxonomic status is reinvestigated. The type material is revised and the lectotype and paralectotypes are designated for O. aristidis. Revised diagnoses and illustrations are proposed for both species, and these are confirmed as valid. Three new species are described from Algeria, Morocco, and Mauritania. The total number of African species is raised to five.

Lourenco WR, Leguin E-A. Further considerations on the species of the genus Orthochirus Karsch, 1891 from Africa, with description of three new species (Scorpiones: Buthidae). Euscorpius 2011:1-19. [Free fulltext]

Family Buthidae

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