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A new species of Erigonoplus (Araneae, Linyphiidae) from Crimea, Ukraine.

ABSTRACT. A new species of Erigonoplus, E. galophilus, is described from eastern Crimea, Ukraine.

Keywords: Erigonoplus galophilus, taxonomy, description


The linyphiid spider genus Erigonoplus Simon 1884 currently contains 19 species (Platnick 2004). The majority of these are rare and known only from single specimens (Dimitrov 2003; Eskov 1986; Eskov & Marusik 1997; Miller 1971; Millidge 1975; Millidge 1979; Tanasevitch 1989; Tanasevitch 1990; Thaler 1991; Wunderlich 1995). Species of Erigonoplus have been found in dry warm open places where they hide under stones or at the base of vegetation (Eskov 1986; Eskov & Marusik 1997; Miller 1971; Tanasevitch 1990; Thaler 1991; Wunderlich 1995). The distribution of the majority of Erigonoplus species is associated with the Ancient-Mediterranean region from Spain to Central Asia, with four exceptions: E. globipes (L. Koch 1872) has a Palaearctic distribution; E. justus (O. P.-Cambridge 1875) occurs in Belgium; and E. minaretifer Eskov 1986 and E. sibiricus Eskov & Marusik 1997 occur in East and South Siberia. Recent collecting in eastern Crimea, Ukraine has revealed a new species of this genus, which is here described.

The materials examined for this study are deposited in the collection of Zoological Museum of Moscow State University (ZMMU), the Zoological Department of Sumy State Teacher's Training University (SSTTU) and in the author's private collection (VGC). The following abbreviations were utilized: E = embolus; Em = embolic membrane; M = membrane; P = paracymbium; Pt = protegulum; PTA = pedipalpal tibial apophysis; R = radix; St = subtegulum; T = tegulum; Tm = position of metatarsal trichobothria; TP = radical tailpiece.


Family Linyphiidae Blackwell 1859 Genus Erigonoplus Simon 1884

Type species.--Erigone inclara Simon 1881. Remarks.--Species of Erigonoplus are generally small spiders with a total length of usually 1.2-1.8 mm, but one species (E. simplex Millidge 1979) is 2.45 mm; palpal tibia with 3 apophyses, dorso-lateral, dorsal, and lateral, the latter with a single trichobothrium. The embolic division has a strongly curved radix which has a large section turned aside from the body axis and which ends with a complex, strongly sclerotized distal piece. The male carapace varies from no elaboration or extension of the cephalic region [E. inclarus (Simon 1881), E. inspinosus Wunderlich 1995, E. nobilis Thaler 1991, E. setosus Wunderlich 1995 and E. simplex] to those forms with a strongly raised cephalic region [E. castellanus (O. P.-Cambridge 1875), E. globipes, E. jarmilae (Miller 1943), E. justus, E. kirghizicus Tanasevitch 1989, E. minaretifer, E. nigrocaeruleus (Simon 1881), E. sibiricus and E. turriger (Simon 1881)]. The male femur I either lacks setae (E. inspinosus) or bears a row of stout spines on its anterior surface. The tibial spinal formula varies from 0:0:0:0 (E. minaretifer and E. sibiricus) to 2:2:1:1 (E. castellanus, E. inspinosus, E. simplex) with the majority of species having a tibial spinal formula of 1:1:1:1. The abdomen of many species is coriaceous or has a poorly delimited scutum (E. minaretifer).

Erigonoplus galophilus new species Figs. 1-5, 8-11

Material examined.--Holotype male, allotype female, bank of Baracol salt lake, 12 km WSW of Pheodosia, eastern Crimea, Ukraine, 45[degrees]00'N, 32[degrees]14'E, 27 April 2003, V. Gnelitsa (ZMMU). Paratypes: 5 males, 4 females, same data (SSTU); 1 male, 1 female, same data (VGC); 1 female, same data except 16 October 2003 (VGC).

Diagnosis.--Erigonoplus galophilus appears to be most similar to E. spinifemuralis Dimitrow 2003 based upon the morphology of the palp (see Figs. 6, 7 for comparative figures). Males of E. galophilus differ from other Erigonoplus species by the tibial spine formula of 0:1:1:1; the stout ventral spines and their location on femur I; the shape of palpal tibia and the configuration of the palp particularly by the shape and proportions of radix and radical tailpiece as well as the form of distal part of embolic division. Females differ from other species of Erigonoplus by the wide epigynum with narrow longitudinal partition reaching the center of the epigynum.


Description.--Male: Total length 1.47; carapace (Fig. 10, 11) yellow-gray; length 0.62; width 0.53; sternum: length 0.40; width 0.38; covered with scattered long thin setae; eyes: width between the posterior median eyes is twice the PME diameter. Leg lengths: leg I: femur 0.52, patella 0.17, tibia 0.43, metatarsus 0.42, tarsus 0.29; leg II: femur 0.48, patella 0.17, tibia 0.38, metatarsus 0.42, tarsus 0.27; leg III: femur 0.43, patella 0.15, tibia 0.31, metatarsus 0.32, tarsus -; leg IV: femur 0.59, patella 0.18, tibia 0.50, metatarsus 0.48, tarsus 0.29; femur I ventrally with strong setae (Fig. 5); tibial spines 0:1:1:1; TmI 0.45; TmIV absent. Abdomen: black with two brown chitinous sigillae; covered with long setae. Palp (Figs. 1-3): radix with large tailpiece and massive heavy sclerotized curved distal part, embolus short and barely visible, a wide embolic membrane with strongly sclerotized outer margin; palpal tibia (Fig. 4) with 3 apophyses.


Female: Total length 1.61; carapace dark brown, length 0.59; width 0.53; sternum: length 1.32; width 1.10; dark brown; eyes: posterior median eyes are one diameter PME apart. Legs: leg I: femur 0.50, patella 0.17, tibia 0.42, metatarsus 0.36, tarsus 0.27; leg II: femur 0.45, patella 0.17, tibia 0.36, metatarsus 0.34, tarsus 0.27; leg III: femur 0.41, patella 0.17, tibia 0.30, metatarsus 0.31, tarsus 0.24; leg IV: femur 0.59, patella 0.17, tibia 0.48, metatarsus 0.42, tarsus 0.28; tibial spines 1:1:1:1; TmI 0.46; TmIV absent. Abdomen: black without chitinous sigillae. Epigynum (Fig. 8) 3.5 times broader than long, narrow central part with parallel margins curved aside in the hind pieces nearly at the center of epigynum, vulva (Fig. 9).

Ecology.--The specimens were all collected using a hand-held suction sampler in detritus and on the soil within the strip of Salicornia on the banks of the salt lake.

I would like to thank Dr Christo Deltshev (Sofia, Bulgaria) for making some important comments on a version of the manuscript.

Manuscript received 29 November 2004, revised 12 June 2005.


Dimitrov, D. 2003. Erigonoplus spinifemuralis sp. n. (Araneae: Linyphiidae: Erigoninae)--a new spider species from Bulgaria. Acta Zoologica Bulgarica 55:33-35.

Eskov, K.Y. 1986. A new species of the Mediterranean spider genus Erigonoplus Simon 1884 from northeastern Siberia (Arachnida: Araneae: Linyphiidae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 66: 333-337.

Eskov, K.Y. & Y.M. Marusik. 1997. A new species of erigonine spider genus Erigonoplus (Aranei Linyphiidae) from south Siberia. Arthropoda Selecta 6:91-93.

Miller, F. 1971. Pavouci-Araneida. Klic zvireny CSSR 4:51-306.

Millidge, A.F. 1975. A taxonomic revision of the genus Erigonoplus Simon 1884 (Araneae: Linyphiidae: Erigoninae). Bulletin of the British Arachnological Society 3:95-100.

Millidge, A.F. 1979. Some erigonine spiders from southern Europe. Bulletin of the British Arachnological Society 4:316-328.

Platnick, N.I. 2004. The world spider catalog, version 3.5. American Museum of Natural History, online at spiders/catalog81-87.

Tanasevitch, A.V. 1989. The linyphiid spiders of Middle Asia (Arachnida: Araneae: Linyphiidae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 69:83-176.

Tanasevitch, A.V. 1990. The spider family Linyphiidae in the fauna of the Caucasus (Arachnida, Aranei). Pp. 5-114. In Fauna nazemnykh bespozvonochnykh Kavkaza (B.R. Striganova, ed.). Moscow, Akademia Nauk.

Thaler, K. 1991. Uber wenig bekannte Zwergspinnen aus den Alpen-VIII (Arachnida: Aranei, Linyphiidae: Erigoninae). Revue Suisse de Zoologie 98:165-184.

Wunderlich, J. 1995. Beschreibung bisher unbekannter Arten der Baldachinspinnen aus der Ostlichen Mediterraneis (Arachnida: Araneae: Linyphiidae). Beitrage zur Araneologie 4:655-686.

Valery Gnelitsa: Zoological Department, Sumy State Teacher's Training University, 87 Romenskaya Str., Sumy, 40002, Ukraine. E-mail:
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Author:Gnelitsa, Valery
Publication:The Journal of Arachnology
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:4EXUR
Date:Jan 1, 2007
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