30 July, 2010

A new Razianus from China

A new species in the genus Razianus Farzanpay, 1987 (Buthidae) has been described in a recent paper by Wilson Lourenco, Dong Sun and the late Ming-Sheng Zhu.

Razianus xinjianganus Lourenco, Sun & Zhu, 2010

This is the first record of Razianus in China.

Razianus xinjianganus sp . nov. , a new record genus and new species of buthid scorpion from China is described on the basis of one female collected in the Kaxgar of Xinjiang. The new species shows affinities with the genera Compsobuthus Vachon , 1949 , Sassanidotus Farzanpay , 1987 and Razianus. Several characteristics , however, place it closer to Razianus , consequently it is our decision to include it in t his last genus. The specimen is part of t he material collected or obtained by t he late Prof . Clas Naumann during the 1970s.

Lourenco WR, Sun D, Zhu M-S. Razianus xinjianganus sp. nov.: A new record genus and new species of (Scorpiones, Buthidae) from China. Journal of Hebei University (Natural Science Edition). 2010;30(3):307-18.

Thanks to professor Wilson Lourenco for sending me this paper!

Family Buthidae

28 July, 2010

New vaejovid genus and species from Mexico

Mexico has a high scorpion diversity and many areas of the country have not yet been properly surveyed for scorpions. Oscar Francke and Javier Ponce-Saavedra now report about a new genus and species in the family Vaejovidae from Michoaca in Mexico.

Kuarapu Francke & Ponce-Saavedra, 2010
Kuarapu purhepecha Francke & Ponce-Saavedra, 2010

This small scorpion is only 2-3 cm long. "Kuarapu" means "scorpion" in the language of the local Tarascan Indians. The species names can be translated as "Tarascan scorpion", as "Purhepecha" is the term used by the Tarascan Indians to refer to themself.

Kuarapu purhepecha, gen. n., sp. n., from Municipio La Huacana, Michoacán, is described from eight adult specimens, four males and four females. It appears most closely related to Serradigitus Stahnke (tribe Stahnkeini Soleglad & Fet, 2006), sharing the serrated pedipalp finger dentition and the placement of trichobothria ib-it near the middle of the fixed finger. The characters that separate it from the four genera currently recognized in the tribe Stahnkeini are the presence of a retrobarbate mating plug in the spermatophore (smooth in other Stahnkeini), the presence of sensory pegs on the basal teeth of the pectines of females, and five distal spinules ventrally on telotarsus III (two on other Stahnkeini). Members of the tribe Syntropini Kraepelin, 1905 do not have serrated pedipalp finger dentition, and trichobothria ib-it are adjacent to the basal inner denticle.

Francke OF, Ponce-Saavedra J. A new genus and species of scorpion (Scorpiones: Vaejovidae) from Michoacan, Mexico. Boletin de la SEA. 2010 (46):51-7.

Thanks to Oscar Francke for sending me this paper!

Family Vaejovidae

27 July, 2010

New scorpion book

Roland Stockmann and Eric Ythier have now published their new scorpion book "Scorpions of the World.

I have not obtained the book yet, so I can not comment more now. I will publish a small review of the book in the blog after I receive the book.

More information about the book and how to order can be found on The Scorpions of the World Homepage.

26 July, 2010

Redescription of the enigmatic Troglotayosicus humiculum

Jose Ochoa, Ricardo Botero-Trujillo and Lorenzo Prendini have published a redescription of Troglotayosicus humiculum Botero-Trujillo & Francke, 2009 (Troglotayosicidae) after finding more specimens of this rare, troglomorphic species in Colombia.

The phylogenetic status of the genus Troglotayosicus Lourenco, 1981 and the family Troglotayosicidae Lourenco, 1998 is also discussed.

The endemic Colombian troglomorphic scorpion, Troglotayosicus humiculum Botero-Trujillo and Francke, 2009, previously known only from the juvenile holotype, is redescribed based on newly collected adults of both sexes. New data on basitarsal spination, telotarsal setation, and carination of the metasoma and pedipalps, together with the first description of the hemispermatophore and a revised interpretation of the trichobothria, are provided, along with brief discussions of the ecology and distribution of the species.

Ochoa JA, Botero-Trujillo R, Prendini L. On the Troglomorphic Scorpion Troglotayosicus humiculum (Scorpiones, Troglotayosicidae), with First Description of the Adults. American Museum Novitates. 2010 Jun(3691):1-19. [free fulltext]

Family Troglotayosicidae

A new Buthacus from India

Amod Zambre and Wilson Lourenco have described a new species of Buthacus (Buthidae) from India.

Buthacus agarwali Zambre & Lourenco, 2010

This is the first record of Buthacus from India and the easternmost limit of the genus.

The species seems to be endemic to arid sand dunes. During day time, B. agarwali create shallow depressions in the sand where it lies with the body partly covered with sand.

The genus Buthacus Birula, 1908 is reported for the first time from the Republic of India and a new species described based on specimens collected in the Thar Desert in western India. This record represents the easternmost known area for the genus.

Zambre AM, Lourenco WR. A new species of Buthacus Birula, 1908 (Scorpiones, Buthidae) from India. Boletin de la SEA. 2010 (46):115-9.

Thanks to Amod Zambre for sending me this paper!

Family Buthidae

Mingsheng Zhu - RIP

I'm sorry to announce the recent death of the Chinese arachnologist Professor Mingsheng Zhu a few weeks ago. Professor Zhu worked extensively on spiders, scorpions and other arachnids from East Asia and published over 70 papers in this field.

A list of publications by Professor Mingsheng Zhu at Hebei University homepage


Jan Ove Rein
Editor of The Scorpion Files

23 July, 2010

Six new Hadruroides from Peru

Jose Ochoa and Lorenzo Prendini have recently published six new species in the genus Hadruroides (Caraboctonidae*) from Peru:

Hadruroides chinchaysuyu Ochoa & Prendini, 2010*
H. geckoi Ochoa & Prendini, 2010*
H. graceae Ochoa & Prendini, 2010*
H. juanchararroi Ochoa & Prendini, 2010*
H. tishqu Ochoa & Prendini, 2010*
H. vichayitos Ochoa & Prendini, 2010*

*The authors prefer to use the Prendni & Wheeler system for higher scorpion taxonomy and have listed Hadruroides as a member of the family Iuridae.

The authors have included an indentification key for Hadruroides in Peru.

We review the taxonomy of the Hadruroides Pocock, 1893 (Iuridae: Caraboctoninae), scorpions of Peru, describe six new species from the north of the country, and report new records of other poorly known species. The description of these species raises to 16 the number of described species in the genus, 13 of which occur in Peru. Four species inhabit dry forest in northern Peru: H. charcasus (Karsch, 1879); H. chinchaysuyu, n. sp.; H. geckoi, n. sp.; H. leopardus Pocock, 1900. Three species occur in inter-Andean valleys along the Cordillera: H. bustamantei Ochoa and Chaparro, 2008; H. carinatus Pocock, 1900; H. mauryi Francke and Soleglad, 1980. Six species inhabit desert along the Pacific coast: H. aguilari Francke and Soleglad, 1980; H. graceae, n. sp.; H. juanchaparroi, n. sp.; H. lunatus (L. Koch, 1867); H. tishqu, n. sp.; H. vichayitos, n. sp. Most species of Hadruroides have restricted distributions, except H. charcasus and H. lunatus, which are apparently more widely distributed. We consider it necessary to reassess all previous records of the latter two species, because we suspect several are based on misidentifications.

Ochoa JA, Prendini L. The Genus Hadruroides Pocock, 1893 (Scorpiones: Iuridae), in Peru: New Records and Descriptions of Six New Species. American Museum Novitates. 2010 Jun(3687):1-56. [Free fulltext]

Family Caraboctonidae

Two new Parabuthus from Namibia

The summer holliday is over and its time again for some news from the scorpion world.

Lorenzo Prendini and Lauren Esposito have conducted a reanalysis of Parabuthus phylogeny and described two new species from Namibia:

Parabuthus glabrimanus Prendini & Esposito, 2010 (Buthidae)
Parabuthus setiventer Prendini & Esposito, 2010 (Buthidae)

Revised diagnosis for the related species Parabuthus gracilis Lamoral, 1979 and P. nanus Lamoral, 1979 are also presented.

Two new thick-tail scorpions in the genus Parabuthus Pocock, 1890 are described from the gravel plains of the Central Namib Desert, Namibia: Parabuthus glabrimanus sp. nov.; Parabuthus setiventer sp. nov. The two new species occupy discrete distributional ranges, allopatric with the closely related species Parabuthus gracilis Lamoral, 1979 and Parabuthus nanus Lamoral, 1979. The distributions of the four species are mapped and a key provided for their identification. Revised diagnoses are provided for P. gracilis and P. nanus. The two new species are added to a previously published morphological character matrix for Parabuthus species and their phylogenetic positions determined in a reanalysis of Parabuthus phylogeny. Parabuthus setiventer sp. nov. is found to be the sister species of P. nanus, whereas P. glabrimanus sp. nov. is sister to a monophyletic group comprising P. gracilis, P. nanus, and P. setiventer sp. nov. The discovery of two new scorpion species endemic to the Central Namib gravel plains contributes to a growing body of evidence that this barren and desolate region is a hotspot of arachnid species richness and endemism.

Prendini L, Esposito LA. A reanalysis of Parabuthus (Scorpiones: Buthidae) phylogeny with descriptions of two new Parabuthus species endemic to the Central Namib gravel plains, Namibia. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. 2010;159(3):673-710. [Subscription required for fulltext] NB! Fulltext is now freely available from The Scorpion Systematics Research Group homepage.

Family Buthidae