02 June, 2015

New species in the enigmatic genus Belisarius from Spain

The troglomorphic genus Belisarius Simon, 1879 (Troglotayosicidae) with one species, has so far only been known from limited areas in the southeastern Pyrenees in France and in Cataluña in Spain. Professor Wilson Lourenco has now revealed the existence of another species in Sierra de las
Nieves (Malaga Province) in southern Spain.

Belisarius ibericus Lourenco, 2015

The occurrence of a new species in this enigmatic genus this far away from the previously known locations is discussed.

Intensive investigation in the collections of the Natural History Museum in Paris led to the location of the original specimens of Belisarius xambeui described by Euge`ne Simon (Simon No. 2675) from the Territoire de Conat in the Pyre´ne´ es-Orientales, France. The two females registered under No. 2675 are now considered as the holotype and paratype of B. xambeui. This investigation on the Belisarius material also led to the discovery of another interesting specimen collected by J. Malhomme in the ‘‘Sierra de las Nieves’’ in the south of Spain. This specimen is described herein as a new species. Comments are also proposed on the mesic environmental conditions, which prevails in ‘‘Sierra de las Nieves’’ region, and on the possible palaeoclimatic events that resulted in the present disrupted distribution of the genus Belisarius.

Lourenco WR. The genus Belisarius Simon, 1879 (Scorpiones: Troglotayosicidae), with the description of a new vicariant species from the south of Spain. Comptes Rendus - Biologies. 2015;338:362-7. [Subscription required for full text]

Thanks to Rolando Teruel for sending me this article!

Family Troglotayosicidae

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