Pholcus khaolek Huber

Berhard A. Huber, Booppa Petchard, Charles Leh Moi Ung, Joseph K. H. Koh & Amir R. M. Ghazali, 2016, The Southeast Asian Pholcus halabala species group (Araneae, Pholcidae): new data from field observations and ultrastructure, European Journal of Taxonomy 190, pp. 1-55: 21-24

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Pholcus khaolek Huber

sp. nov.

Pholcus khaolek Huber  , sp. nov.

Figs 52–53 View Figure , 63–78View Figs 63 – 67View Figs 68 – 78, 99–101 View Figure


Easily distinguished from most similar known relative ( Ph. kuhapimuk  sp. nov.) by morphology of male palps ( Figs 63–64 View Figure ; shapes of male palpal tarsus and procursus tip, larger uncus, complex appendix with retrolateral process) and by female internal genitalia ( Figs 66–67 View Figure ; distinctive median triangular sclerite). From other close relatives also by combination of pale coloration ( Figs 52–53 View Figure ), shape of male palpal trochanter apophysis (curved, proximally wide, distally pointed; Fig. 64 View Figure ), and shape and position of pore plates ( Fig. 67 View Figure ).


The species name is derived from the type locality; noun in apposition.

Type material

THAILAND: holotype, ♂, ZFMK ( Ar 15028), Nakhon Si Thammarat, Khao Nan National Park, Tham Khao Lek (8°46.09' N, 98°43.68' E), 95 m a.s.l., on rock walls around cave, 10 Mar. 2015 (B.A. Huber, B. Petcharad)GoogleMaps  .

Other material examined

THAILAND: 6 ♂♂, 5 ♀♀, 2 juvs, ZFMK (5 ♂♂, 4 ♀♀, Ar 15029–30)GoogleMaps  and PSUZC (1 ♂, 1 ♀), same data as holotypeGoogleMaps  ; 1 ♂, 2 ♀♀, 3 juvs, in absolute ethanol, ZFMK ( Mal 350), same data  .


Male (holotype)

MEASUREMENTS. Total body length 4.6, carapace width 1.3. Leg 1: 48.6 (11.6 + 0.6 + 11.7 + 22.8 + 1.9), tibia 2: 7.9, tibia 3: 4.5, tibia 4: 6.3; tibia 1 L/d: 95. Distance PME-PME 340 µm, diameter PME 125 µm, distance PME-ALE ~35 µm; distance AME-AME 50 µm; diameter AME 55 µm.

COLOR. Carapace pale ochre-yellow with pair of light brown marks posteriorly; ocular area and clypeus not darkened; sternum light brown with lighter marks and dark lateral margins; legs ochre-yellow with dark brown patellae and tibia-metatarsus joints; abdomen monochromous ochre-gray.

BODY. Habitus as in Fig. 53 View Figure ; ocular area slightly raised, with brushes of stronger hairs behind each PME ( Figs 68–69 View Figure ); carapace without median furrow; clypeus unmodified; sternum wider than long (0.84/0.52), unmodified. ALS with one widened, one pointed, and six smaller cylindrically shaped spigots of varying sizes ( Fig. 78 View Figure ).

CHELICERAE. As in Fig. 65 View Figure , with pair of distal frontal apophyses provided with two to three modified (cone-shaped) hairs each ( Fig. 70 View Figure ), pair of rounded lateral processes, and pair of small indistinct proximal frontal humps.

PALPS. As in Figs 63–64 View Figure ; coxa unmodified; trochanter with large retrolatero-ventral apophysis; femur proximally widened on ventral side, with small retrolatero-dorsal apophysis; tarsus without dorsal elongation; procursus rather simple ( Figs 71–72 View Figure ), with prolateral weakly sclerotized process and transparent membranous structures; procursus tip as in Fig. 75 View Figure ; bulb with distinctive uncus and appendix with retrolateral process ( Fig. 73 View Figure ); weakly sclerotized short embolus.

LEGS. Without spines and curved hairs; few vertical hairs; retrolateral trichobothrium on tibia 1 at 6%; prolateral trichobothrium absent on tibia 1, present on other tibiae; tarsus 1 with> 30 pseudosegments, distally fairly distinct. Tarsus 4 comb-hairs as in Fig. 71 View Figure .

Male (variation)

Tibia 1 in 5 other males: 10.1–12.8 (mean 11.7). Some males with white marks on abdomen.


In general similar to male ( Fig. 52 View Figure ) but without stronger hairs behind PME; eye triads closer together than in male (PME-PME distance: 220 µm). Tibia 1 in 5 females: 8.7–10.1 (mean 9.3). Epigynum weakly sclerotized bulging area, only posterior area more strongly sclerotized, with small but distinct ‘knob’ ( Figs 66 View Figure , 77 View Figure , 99–100 View Figure ); internal genitalia as in Figs 67 View Figure and 101 View Figure , with anterior arch and distinctive triangular sclerite visible through cuticle.

Natural history

This species was abundant at the type locality on vertical and slightly overhanging smooth rocks. Specimens were observed tightly pressed against the rock surface, in some cases with a small domed web nearby. When disturbed, the spiders dropped to the ground.


Known from type locality only ( Fig. 57 View Figure ).


Germany, Bonn, Zoologische Forschungsinstitut und Museum "Alexander Koenig"




USA, Florida, Gainesville, University of Florida, Florida Museum of Natural History, Allyn Museum