Deelemanikara christae, Jäger, 2021

Jäger, Peter, 2021, Two new enigmatic genera of huntsman spiders from Madagascar (Araneae Sparassidae), Zootaxa 4984 (1), pp. 335-346 : 339-343

publication ID

publication LSID


persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Deelemanikara christae

spec. nov.

Deelemanikara christae spec. nov.

Figs 14–36 View FIGURES 14–22 View FIGURES 23–29 View FIGURES 30–36

Type material. MADAGASCAR: Toamasina Province: Holotype female, Beparasy [ca S 19°10’9’’, E 48°1’25’’, 890 m elevation], A. Lambillon leg. February 1968 ( MRCA 142.748 View Materials ). GoogleMaps

Additional material examined. MADAGASCAR: Antananarivo Province: 2 females, Antsirabe, J. Gossuin leg. X/ XI/1970 [10.11.1970 or October/ November 1970?] (one female MRCA 142.587 View Materials ; other female in SMF) .

Etymology. The species is named for Christa Deeleman-Reinhold to honour her achievements in arachnological research, directly by publishing a large amount of excellent papers on Araneae , including her seminal book on SE-Asian forest spiders, and indirectly by inspiring generations of arachnologists. The species epithet is a name in the genitive case.

Diagnosis. Small Sparassidae (body length of females: 5.6–8.1) with laterigrade legs. The following combination of characters distinguishes females of this species from those of other Sparassidae ( Figs 14–17 View FIGURES 14–22 , 23–24, 27–29 View FIGURES 23–29 ): 1. Epigynal field as long as wide, its narrowed anterior part with shallow pocket in its anterior-most part. 2. Copulatory openings small, circular, with first winding of intromittent ducts anteriad. 3. Internal duct system with elongated U-shaped course, left and right part separated from each other by more than their width.

Description. Male: unknown.

Female: PL 3.3, PW 3.2, AW 2.2, OL 3.8, OW 3.0. Sternum wider (1.85) than long (1.6), with 4 pairs of lateral projections pointing in direction of bases of coxae ( Fig. 28 View FIGURES 23–29 ). Gnathocoxae distinctly longer (1.05) than wide (0.73), with uniserial serrula in usual position and of normal length (i.e. not reduced as in the genus May). Labium length 0.4, width 069. Eyes ( Figs 18 View FIGURES 14–22 , 30, 32, 34 View FIGURES 30–36 ): both eye rows slightly procurved in dorsal view; median eyes and lateral eyes roughly equally large; lateral eyes on small humps. AME 0.21, ALE 0.251 PME 0.18, PLE 0.20, AME–AME 0.25, AME–ALE 0.30, PME–PME 0.46, PME–PLE 0.40, AME–PME 0.24, ALE–PLE 0.22, clypeus height at AME 0.24, clypeus height at ALE 0.20. Cheliceral furrow with 3 promarginal and 6 retromarginal teeth plus 14 denticles in straight row and 2 additional denticles proximally. Retromargin of cheliceral furrow close to fang base with 1 escort seta ( Fig. 19 View FIGURES 14–22 ). Spination: palp: 130, 000, 2111, 1013; legs: femur I 1(2)13, II 3(2)12, III 313(1), IV 111; patella I–IV 000; tibia I–II 1024, III 2024, IV 1014 (0004); metatarsus I–III 2014, IV 2024. Leg formula 2143. Measurements of palp and legs: palp 4.7 (1.4, 0.6, 1.2, -, 1.5), I 13.7 (3.5, 1.6, 3.6, 3.8, 1.2), II 17.9 (4.6, 1.8, 5.1, 5.0, 1.4), III 10.7 (3.0, 1.3, 2.7, 2.7, 1.0), IV 12.1 (3.5, 1.2, 3.2, 3.1, 1.1). Metatarsus III with a single small ventro-distal bristle embedded in scopula; metatarsus IV with ventro-distal field of 6 bristles and a longitudinal double row of bristles along axis of metatarsus. Scopulae on tarsi and metatarsi thin. Trilobate membrane with moderately distinct median hook and lateral projections, all of same length and similar size ( Fig. 20 View FIGURES 14–22 ). Claw of female palp with 5–6 moderately long teeth ( Fig. 21 View FIGURES 14–22 ); leg claws with 14 uniserial teeth and distinctly convex dorsal side ( Fig. 22 View FIGURES 14–22 ). Opisthosoma oval ( Figs 30–31, 33, 35 View FIGURES 30–36 ).

Copulatory organ as described in diagnosis ( Figs 14–17 View FIGURES 14–22 , 23–24, 27–29 View FIGURES 23–29 ). Epigynal field as long as wide, widest part in posterior half, without slit sensilla or distinct lateral bands (muscle attachment fields). Epigynal furrows indistinct, running from epigastric furrow divergingly in direction of copulatory openings; the latter small, circular, with small mating plugs. Median septum with anteriorly situated depression and bulge in posterior half. Internal duct system simple, with copulatory ducts running first anteriorly, with some loops after a U-turn posteriorly towards fertilisation ducts; without recognisable glandular appendages or pores.

Colouration in ethanol ( Figs 30–35 View FIGURES 30–36 ). Mostly pale yellowish to white; tibiae I, palpal tarsi, chelicerae and epigyne yellowish brown to brown. Dorsal shield of prosoma with longitudinal fovea, without pattern, striae faintly expressed. Opisthosoma with white guanine crystals all over; ventrally with two posteriorly converging slightly darkened stripes fused in front of spinnerets. Judging from colour of preserved specimens, living spiders may be green to yellow.

Variation. Females PL 2.6 2.8 , OL 2.8–3.7. Cheliceral furrow with 5–7 retromarginal teeth and 14–17 denticles mainly in a single row. Spination: Femur I 1(2)12/012(313), II 2(3)11/1(0)10, III 210/110, IV 000; tibia II 1014, III 1013 (4), IV 2014 (1004)/101(0)2; metatarsus I 1024 (2014, III 201(2)4, IV 2004 /2014(1004). Metatarsus III with 2–3 small ventro-distal bristles embedded in scopula; metatarsus IV with ventro-distal field of 5–6 bristles. Copulatory organ: Epigyne of one female with large, amorphous transversal plug stretching across posterior half of epigyne and covering both copulatory openings; epigyne of other female with no mating plug. Epigyne of one female with less distinct wrinkles close to anterior pocket than in holotype. Copulatory openings circular, with epigynal furrows running from epigastric furrow close to openings. Posterior bulging part of median septum distinctly separated from anterior part by transversal line. Colouration paler than in holotype, with metatarsus I and palpal tarsus not as dark.

Distribution. Known from two localities in central Madagascar ( Fig. 36 View FIGURES 30–36 : red circles).

Natural History. Nothing is so far known about the natural history of this species. The spiders examined were collected from forests at slopes between 400 m and 700 m elevation. The body colouration indicates a foliage-dwelling lifestyle.


Forschungsinstitut und Natur-Museum Senckenberg