Chthonius, Gardini, Giulio, 2013

Gardini, Giulio, 2013, A revision of the species of the pseudoscorpion subgenus Chthonius (Ephippiochthonius) (Arachnida, Pseudoscorpiones, Chthoniidae) from Italy and neighbouring areas, Zootaxa 3655 (1), pp. 1-151: 13

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n. sp.

Chthonius   (E.) altamurae   n. sp.

( Figs 9–12 View FIGURES 9 – 12 , 285 View FIGURES 282 – 285 )

Type locality: Italy, Apulia, Bari Prov., Altamura, Grotta Lamalunga 1295 Pu/BA (40 ° 52 ʹ 16 ʺN 16 ° 35 ʹ 15 ʺE).

Distribution. Italy: Apulia.

Diagnosis (Ƥ). An anophthalmic hypogean species of Chthonius   ( Ephippiochthonius   ) from Apulia that differs from other species of the C. tetrachelatus   group in the following combination of characters: troglomorphic facies; movable cheliceral finger without isolated subapical tooth (di); carapace with epistome rounded, dentate and weakly prominent, 1 preocular microseta on each side and two macrosetae on posterior margin; pedipalpal fixed and movable fingers with 18 and 7 triangular teeth, respectively; pedipalpal fixed finger at level of est-it with 3 teeth occupying 0.1 mm; length of chela 0.92 mm, length of pedipalpal movable finger 0.53; chela 5.9 times as long as deep; ratio of pedipalpal femur/carapace 1.6.

Type material. ITALY — Apulia: Bari Prov.— 1 Ƥ (holotype), Altamura, Grotta Lamalunga 1295 Pu/BA, 460 m a.s.l. (40 ° 52 ʹ 16 ʺN 16 ° 35 ʹ 15 ʺE), 13.III. 2002, S. Inguscio & E. Rossi leg. (deposited in MHNG).

Derivatio nominis. The limestone cave called “Grotta di Lamalunga” is located in the territory of Altamura, an Apulian centre famous for the finding, in the same cave, of remains of a Homo neanderthalensis   skeleton.

Description of adult (Ƥ; 3 unknown). Troglomorphic facies. Integument depigmented, pale brown; hispid granulation on lateral surface of carapace, on cheliceral palm, on ventrodistal surface of pedipalpal hand and on base of movable finger. Carapace 1.1 times longer than broad, posteriorly slightly constricted; anterior margin (fig. 9) strongly dentate between median macrosetae, with rounded, dentate, weakly prominent epistome; no eyes, ocular area as in fig. 10; chaetotaxy m 4m: 6: 4: 2: 2 (18), macrosetae weakly thick; length of anteromedian macrosetae 0.11 mm. Chaetotaxy of tergites I –X 4: 4: 4: 4: 6: 6: 6: 6: 6: 4. Chaetotaxy of sternites II –X 10:(3) 8 (4):(2) 7 (2): 8: 6: 6: 6: 6: 7. Chelicerae (fig. 11) 2.3 times as long as broad, palm with 6 setae and 2 microsetae laterally; fixed finger with 8 teeth proximally reduced in size and 5–6 proximal microtubercles; movable finger with 9 teeth and 4 proximal microtubercles, isolated subapical tooth (di) absent; gl ratio 0.58; spinneret prominent and apically rounded; rallum with 11 blades; serrulae interior and exterior respectively with 12 and 14 blades. Coxal setae: pedipalp 5 (including 2 on manducatory process), I 3 + 3 marginal microsetae, II 4, III 5, IV 6; coxae II with 11 and 14 coxal spines, coxae III with 7 and 9 coxal spines; intercoxal tubercle bisetose. Pedipalp (fig. 12): femur 7.1 times as long as broad; chela 5.9 times as long as deep; hand of chela 2.45 times as long as deep, with a weak and deep hump distad of ib-isb; fixed chelal finger with 20 teeth: 18 triangular pointed teeth with dental canals, gradually reduced proximally, and 2 tiny, rudimentary basal teeth without canals; tip of the fixed finger with a modified accessory tooth (td) on antiaxial face; pedipalpal fixed finger at level of est-it with 3 teeth occupying 0.1 mm (distance between successive apices 0.037 mm); movable finger on the whole with 18 teeth: one very small distal tooth without dental canal, 7 triangular and pointed teeth with dental canals and 8 small rounded teeth, without dental canals, gradually reduced proximally back to halfway between sb and b; coupled sensilla pc nearer sb than b; trichobothria as in fig 12, eb-esb-ist placed in a straight line; basal apodeme of movable finger strongly sclerotized, rectangular, apically cut and truncate; ratio of movable finger/hand of chela 1.4; ratio of pedipalpal femur/movable finger 1.3; ratio of pedipalpal femur/carapace 1.6.

Measurements (in mm). Body length 1.6. Carapace 0.44 × 0.41 (0.37 anteriorly). Chelicerae 0.37 × 0.16, movable finger length 0.185. Pedipalp: femur 0.71 × 0.10; chela 0.92 × 0.155; hand length 0.38; movable finger length 0.53.

Remarks. Among the species of the Chthonius tetrachelatus   group, C. altamurae   n. sp. is presumably related to the epigean C. tetrachelatus   because of the spaced dentition of the fixed chelal finger, but it differs clearly from the latter in most troglomorphic characters. C. altamurae   n. sp. differs from the related hypogean C. apulicus   from Apulia in the lower degree of troglomorphic modifications: chela 5.9 times as long as deep (7.4 in C. apulicus   ), length of chela 0.92 mm (1.78 mm in C. apulicus   ), ratio of pedipalpal femur/carapace 1.6 (2.0 in C. apulicus   ). C. altamurae   n. sp. is similar to C. elymus   from Sicily, a hypogean species related to the epigean C. siculus   , from which it differs chiefly in dentition of chelal fingers: fixed chelal finger at level of est-it with 3 teeth occupying 0.1 mm (distance between successive apices 0.037 mm) in C. altamurae   n. sp., with 4 teeth occupying 0.1 mm (distance between successive apices 0.027 mm) in C. elymus   .