28 April, 2016

A new Scorpio species from southern Algeria

Wilson Lourenco and Andrea Rossi have recently described a new species of Scorpio Linnaeus, 1758 (Scorpionidae) from the Tassili N’Ajjer Mountains in South Algeria.

Scorpio tassili Lourenco & Rossi, 2016

In recent publications about the genus Scorpio Linnaeus, 1758, it was suggested that the population previously cited from the Tassili N’Ajjer Mountains in the South of Algeria, could represent a distinct species. Intensive investigation in the collections of the Natural History Museum in Paris, led to the location of the only known specimen collected by F. Bernard in 1949. The present study of this female specimen confirms its position as a new species of Scorpio and, curiously, shows that the Tassili N’Ajjer population seems to have more affinities with S. niger Lourenço & Cloudsley-Thompson, 2012 known from Niger than to S. punicus Fet, 2000, distributed in the high plateaus of Tunisia and North of Algeria. The new species is described here and, as in previous studied cases, the Saharan Massifs prove to be very important endemic centres within the Sahara desert.

Lourenco WR, Rossi A. Confirmation of a new species of Scorpio Linnaeus, 1758 in the Tassili N’Ajjer Mountains, South Algeria (Scorpiones: Scorpionidae). Onychium. 2016;12:11-8.[Open Access]

Family Scorpionidae

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