Sarax brachydactylus Simon, 1892

Miranda, Gustavo Silva de, Giupponi, Alessandro P. L., Prendini, Lorenzo & Scharff, Nikolaj, 2021, Systematic revision of the pantropical whip spider family Charinidae Quintero, 1986 (Arachnida, Amblypygi), European Journal of Taxonomy 772, pp. 1-409 : 178-180

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Sarax brachydactylus Simon, 1892


Sarax brachydactylus Simon, 1892

Figs 103 View Fig , 108 View Fig ; Table 8

Sarax brachydactylus Simon, 1892: 43–44 .

Sarax brachydactylus – Kraepelin 1895: 45 (in part); 1899: 251. — Gravely 1915b: 441. — Giltay 1931: 24–25. — Mello-Leitão 1931: 55. — Werner 1935: 471. — Wolf 1938: 537. — Fage 1946b: 78–79, fig. 3b. — Bristowe 1952: 699. — Weidner 1959: 142. — Vandel 1965: 93. — Kraus 1970: 177–178, figs 1–8. — Yussof 1997: plate 27. — Weygoldt 2002c: 137–138, figs 13–15. — Harvey 2003: 7. — Dittmar et al. 2005: 224, 227. — Giupponi & Miranda 2012: 169–171, figs 8–14. — Wolff et al. 2015: 525, 534–535, 538, figs 2d, g, 3a–b, d, 10; 2017: 2, 5, fig. 1. — Gibbons et al. 2019: fig. 1c.


This species may be separated from other species of Sarax in Southeast Asia and Oceania by the following combination of characters: cheliceral claw with three teeth, basal segment with small tooth in retrolateral row, opposite to bifid tooth; pedipalp femur with four or five dorsal spines and three or four ventral spines ( Fig. 108E–F View Fig ); pedipalp patella with four or five dorsal spines and three ventral spines ( Fig. 108E–F View Fig ); leg IV basitibia with four pseudo-articles; trichobothrium bt situated distally; distitibia trichobothrium bc situated closer to bf than to s bf; sc and sf series each with five trichobothria.


The species name is a compound adjective, derived from the Greek words ‘ brachy ’, meaning ‘broad’, and ‘ dactylus ’ meaning ‘finger’, hence ‘broad-fingered’. Although unspecified, the species name, evidently refers to the appearance of the pedipalps.

Type material

Syntypes PHILIPPINES • 1 ♀, 1 ♂; Luzon , Grotte d’Antipolo , Grotte de San-Mateo and Grotte de Colapnitan [details unspecified in original paper, but according to Seiter et al. (2015): 7 ad.]; MNHN 14802 View Materials 1 ad., 2 juv.; same collection data as for preceding; MNHN 14803 View Materials .

Additional material

PHILIPPINES – Luzon • 1 ♀, 1 ♂; Grotto de Antipolo ; BMNH 1894.12.16.1-2 1 ♀ [labelled ‘paratype’]; 17 Nov. 1894; ZMH Nr. 6 1 ♀; Laguna District, Los Banos, Hortorium ; S. Huber leg.; leaf litter, under flower pots; AMCC [ LP 1926 ] 1 ind. [without gonopod]; Los Banos Laguna, Mount Makiling ; 14°08′59.2″ N, 121°13′34.2″ E; 26 Feb. 2008; S. Huber leg.; AMCC [ LP 9824 ] GoogleMaps . – Tawi Tawi • 1 ♀; Tarawakan, north of Batu Batu; 05°08′45.46″ N, 119°53′35.13″ E; 23 Oct. 1961; Noon Dan. Exp. 1961–1962 leg.; ZMUC 21615 View Materials ; new record GoogleMaps .


CARAPACE. Six anterior setae ( Fig. 108A View Fig ); frontal process triangular ( Fig. 108C View Fig ). Small granules densely scattered between ocular triads and among sulci. Median eyes well developed; median ocular tubercle reduced, with pair of setae; lateral eyes well developed, pale, seta lateral to lateral ocular triad; lateral ocular triad situated near carapace margin; curved carina between ocular triads and carapace margin.

STERNUM. Tritosternum projected anteriorly with typical setation, long, surpassing base of pedipalp coxae ( Fig. 108B View Fig ); other sternal platelets narrow and concave, with pair of setae anteriorly on plaque and some smaller setae posteriorly; pentasternum with four setae anteriorly and four setae near membranous region.

OPISTHOSOMA. Ventral sacs and ventral sac cover present.

GENITALIA. Female genital operculum with short setae posteromedially; median region flat with slender setae apically; gonopod plunger-like, unsclerotized basally. Male gonopod only sclerotized at apex of lateral lobe.

CHELICERAE. Small tooth on retrolateral surface of basal segment, opposite to bifid tooth; retrolateral surface of claw with row of setae basally to medially; claw with three teeth; two rows of several setae on prolateral surface of basal segment; bifid tooth on basal segment with dorsal cusp larger than ventral cusp.

PEDIPALPS. No secondary sexual dimorphism evident. Coxae without seta encircled by round carina and with three setae on margin. Femur with four or five dorsal spines and three or four ventral spines ( Fig. 108E–F View Fig ); three prominent setiferous tubercles between dorsal spine 1 and proximal margin; ventral spine between spine 1 and proximal margin, two-thirds length of spine 1. Patella with four or five dorsal spines ( Fig. 108E View Fig ); two prominent setiferous tubercles distal to spine I; three ventral spines. Tibia with ventral spine distally and three or four setae between spine and distal margin. Tarsus with two dorsal spines, both short, distal spine slightly longer than proximal spine ( Fig. 108D View Fig ); cleaning organ with 32 setae in ventral row.

LEGS. Tibia of leg I with 23 articles; tarsus I with 41 articles; first tarsal article similar in length to second article. Leg IV basitibia with four pseudo-articles, without sclerotized, denticulate margin at apex of articles; trichobothrium bt situated in distal third of pseudo-article; distitibia trichobothrium bc situated closer to bf than to s bf; sc and sf series each with five trichobothria.


See Table 8.


Restricted to the Philippines.

Natural history

Found inside and outside caves.


Seiter et al. (2015) examined the type material and mentioned a juvenile holotype (MNHN 14801) and seven adults (MNHN 14802), one adult and two juv. (MNHN 14803) “types” (presumably paratypes). However, Simon (1892) only mentioned a male and a female, and did not specify a holotype in the original description. It is unclear which of the specimens examined by Seiter et al. (2015) are the original syntypes.

Another specimen, deposited at ZMH and labelled “ paratype ”, is unlikely to be part of the original syntype series for the following reasons. The ZMH material contains a label on which is written “E. Simon, 17 Nov. 1894 ”, indicating the specimen was examined by Simon in 1894, two years after the publication of the species. The sinistral pedipalp and some legs are detached from the ZMH specimen, which differs from other material of S. brachydactylus in the following respects: pedipalp femur with large spine between dorsal spines 1 and 2, two-thirds length of spine 1, medium-sized spine between dorsal spines 2 and 3, three prominent setiferous tubercles proximal to dorsal spine 1, dorsal setiferous tubercles aligned, and large spine proximal to ventral spine 1; pedipalp patella with four ventral spines and spine between spine I and 4; pedipalp tibia with three long setae between distal spine and distal margin; leg IV basitibia trichobothrium bt situated medially.

Reports of S. brachydactylus from the Malay Peninsula ( Fage 1946; McClure et al. 1967; Dittmar et al. 2005) are misidentifications. McClure et al. (1967) published a list of taxa from the Dark Cave of the Batu Caves, and reported S. brachydactylus from the deep part of the cave. At that time, S. batuensis had already been described from the same locality (the type series of S. batuensis was collected by McClure); hence, the report of S. brachydactylus from these caves, repeated by Dittmar et al. (2005), is erroneous.


United Kingdom, London, The Natural History Museum [formerly British Museum (Natural History)]


USA, Illinois, Chicago, Field Museum of Natural History (also used by Finnish Museum of Natural History)


Zoologisches Museum Hamburg


Ambrose Monell Cryo Collection, American Museum of Natural History














Sarax brachydactylus Simon, 1892

Miranda, Gustavo Silva de, Giupponi, Alessandro P. L., Prendini, Lorenzo & Scharff, Nikolaj 2021

Sarax brachydactylus

Wolff J. O. & Seiter M. & Gorb S. N. 2015: 525
Giupponi A. P. L. & Miranda G. S. 2012: 169
Dittmar K. & Porter M. L. & Price L. & Svenson G. & Whitling M. F. 2005: 224
Harvey M. S. 2003: 7
Weygoldt P. 2002: 137
Kraus O. 1970: 177
Vandel A. 1965: 93
Weidner H. 1959: 142
Bristowe W. S. 1952: 699
Fage L. 1946: 78
Wolf B. 1938: 537
Werner F. 1935: 471
Giltay L. 1931: 24
Mello-Leitao C. 1931: 55
Gravely F. H. 1915: 441
Kraepelin K. 1895: 45

Sarax brachydactylus

Simon E. 1892: 44