Zoosphaerium denticulatum, Wesener, 2009

Wesener, Thomas, 2009, Unexplored richness: discovery of 31 new species of Giant Pill-Millipedes endemic to Madagascar, with a special emphasis on microendemism (Diplopoda, Sphaerotheriida), Zootaxa 2097 (1), pp. 1-134: 108-110

publication ID

http://doi.org/ 10.11646/zootaxa.2097.1.1



persistent identifier


treatment provided by


scientific name

Zoosphaerium denticulatum

new species

Zoosphaerium denticulatum   , new species

Derivatio nominis: denticulatum   , adjective, refers to the numerous small teeth on the posterior telopods (Fig. 72E).

Studied material: Holotype: 1 M (30 mm long), FMMC 5446, Locus typicus: Madagascar, Province Fianarantsoa, Andrombovata , 2 km W Andrombovata, along Tatamaly River , 21°30.7'S, 47°24.6'E, 1075 m, coll. S. Goodman, 12–19.xi.2000. GoogleMaps  

Distribution & Ecology: Only known from the type locality, 25 km South of Ranomafana (Fig. 50).

Diagnosis: Up to 30 mm long. Color blackish with dark green legs. Tergites glabrous. Anal shield wellrounded, covered with dense field of minute setae. Disc of antenna with circa 26 apical cones (Fig. 73B). Movable finger of posterior telopods almost glabrous, broad, with well-rounded tip, with three sclerotized spines (Fig. 72D); posterior side with>25 small, sclerotized teeth (Fig. 72E). Fixed finger long and slender, basally with one small spine, distally at inner margin with numerous sclerotized spots (Fig. 72D). Fixed finger shorter than movable finger. One stridulation rib on each male harp (Fig. 72A). Anal shield with two locking carinae, anterior small, posterior> 2.5 times longer than first. Female unknown.

FIGURE 073. Zoosphaerium denticulatum   n. sp., holotype, SEM, antenna A: first antennomere with sensilla basiconica (arrow); B: apical view on sixth antennomere with disc; C: lateral view.

Similar species: Z. denticulatum   , n. sp. features a unique combination of characters, as one stridulation rib on the harp, more than 20 apical cones on the antennae and a row of crenulated teeth on the third podomere of anterior telopods (Figs 72B, C).

Description: Body length: Holotype male: length 30 mm, width of thoracic shield up to 15.3 mm, height of thoracic shield up to 8.5 mm.

Habitus: Medium sized, black, glabrous pill millipede.

Coloration: Head, collum, thoracic shield, tergites and anal shield colored completely blackish, antennae and legs dark green.

Head: Eyes with>75 ocelli.

Antennae: Length of antennomeres: 1>2=3>4=5<6 (Fig. 73C), sixth antennomere bearing disc with 26–27 sensory cones (Fig. 73B). First antennomere remarkably broader than others, short, with groove and 1 or 2 rows of sensilla basiconica (Fig.73A). Sclerotized teeth at base of antennomeres 1–3 (Fig. 73C).

Mouthparts not dissected.

Collum: Median part of collum glabrous.

Thoracic shield without peculiarities.

Tergites: Paratergites projecting slightly posteriorly.

Endotergum: Inner area with broad conical spines and long hair. Two rows of small, circular cuticular impression, regularly distributed (Fig. 74E). Single row of marginal bristles, reaching 1/2 towards margin (Fig. 74E).

FIGURE 074. SEM, endoterga of midbody tergites, A: Zoosphaerium tampolo   n. sp.; B: Z. ignotum   n. sp.; C: Z. tainkintana   n. sp.; D: Z. viridissimum   n. sp.; E: Z. denticulatum   n. sp. Abbreviations: ci = cuticular impressions; IA = inner area; mb = marginal bristles; mr = marginal ridge.

Anal shield: Well-rounded, neither bell-shaped nor tapered. Completely covered by dense field of minute setae. Underside carries two well-developed black locking carinae, anterior one small, but well-developed. Posterior carina> 2.5 times longer than anterior one

Legs: Tarsi of first pair of legs with four, second with five and third pair with seven ventral spines. First two leg pairs with only weakly curved claws and without apical spine. Tarsi of legs 3–21 with curved claws, 11–13 ventral spines and one apical spine. In 9th leg femur 2.2 times, tarsi 5.5 times longer than wide.

Stigmatic plates: First plate lobe short, with well-rounded tip.

Female unknown

Male sexual characters: Anal shield covered by dense field of setae.

Anterior telopods (Figs 72A–C): Harp with single stridulation rib, rib straight, very long. Second podomere process lobe-like and little curved with rounded edges, reaching only up to 1/3 of third podomere height, apically with sclerotized spots. Third podomere long, cavity mesally with numerous sclerotized spots and three sclerotized spines, laterally with row of 15–18 crenulated, large teeth. One sclerotized teeth located closely towards tip.

Posterior telopods (Figs 72D, E): Movable finger of chela thick, 2.4 times longer than wide, weakly curved, apically slightly tapering. Hollowed-out inner margin with three sclerotized spines, posterior aspect with>25 small, sclerotized teeth. Fixed finger shorter and more slender than movable finger. Fixed finger tip weakly curved, anterior side basally with one short sclerotized spine, apically with numerous sclerotized spots. Finger on both sides covered with few long hairs. Movable finger on posterior side medially with few hairs, remaining parts of posterior telopods glabrous. Inner horns of syncoxite.