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Redescription of Zodariellum sungar (Araneae: Zodariidae) with the first description of the female.

Zodariidae is a medium-sized family of spiders distinguished by their long anterior spinnerets on a common base, and other reduced spinnerets. This family includes more than 970 species in 76 genera, with a worldwide distribution, but is most abundant in tropical and subtropical regions. Zodariellum Andreeva & Tyschchenko 1968 is a small genus of ant-eating spiders of the subfamily Zodariinae, including 22 previously described species from Asia and Africa (Platnick 2013). The ant eating spider Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991) is only known by the male and the description was never provided in any other taxonomical publication (Platnick 2013). The present paper is devoted to the first description of the female and the redescription of the male of Z. sungar (Jocque, 1991) and the new combination of the species to the genus Zodarion Walckenaer, 1826.


Specimens were collected during the day by hand aspirator from under stones and are deposited in the collection of the Arachnological Museum of Kirikkale University (KUAM). Pictures were taken, using a Leica S8APO microscope by means of a Leica DC 160 camera, in dishes of different sizes with paraffin on the bottom. Different size holes were made in the paraffin to keep specimens in the right position. Images were montaged using "Combine-ZM" image stacking software and "Photoshop CS5" image editing software. SEM microphotographs were made with a JEOL JSM-5600 at the University of Kirikkale. All the specimens are preserved in 70% ethanol. Measurements are given in millimeters. Epigynes were drawn in the natural and the cleared state (after immersion in 10% KOH for 12-48 hours at room temperature). Leg measurements are shown as: total length (femur, patella, tibia, metatarsus, tarsus); measurements of leg segments were taken from the dorsal side.

Morphological Terms

Cyb, cymbium; E, embolus; Fd, fertilization duct; Id, insemination duct; Ma, median apophysis; Mp, median plate; Se, septum; Rs, receptaculum (spermatheca); Rta, Retrolateral tibial apophysis; T, tegulum; Wi, window (abbreviations adapted from Kovblyuk, 2003 and Marusik & Fet 2009).

Material Examined

Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991) (Figs. 1-4)

1[male], 1[female], Gaziantep Province, Sinankoy Village, N 37[degrees]2'16"E 37[degrees]35'58", elev. 965 m, 4-V-2012; 1[male], Gaziantep Province, Karkami g District, Giircay Village, N 37[degrees]2'16"E 37[degrees] 35' 58", elev. 380 m, 5-V-2012; 2[male], 1[female], Sanhurfa Province, Suruc District, N 37[degrees]2'49"E 38[degrees]28'15"E, Elev. 610 m; 5-V-2012.


Male. Total length 4.7, Carapace 2.4 long--1.9 wide, Abdomen 2.3 long--1.6 wide. Pattern distinct, carapace dark brown, without band or stripe. Abdomen blackish gray, with u-shaped vertical stripes from sides. Legs dark yellow, except for femur. Leg formula IV, I, II, III. Leg measurements (n = 4): I 10.7 (2.7, 0.7, 2.6, 3.1, 1.6), II 9.9 (2.6, 0.6, 2.2, 3, 1.5), III 9.7 (2.7, 0.7, 2.1, 3, 1.2), IV 11.9 (3.4, 0.7, 3, 3.9, 0.9). Median apophysis large, brush hook shaped, denticulated at bottom, upper part strongly developed. Cymbium with retrolateral crest. Tibial apophysis short, with three protruding apophysis. Embolus very long, originating at baso-lateral side of tegulum. Palp as in Figs. 5-6, 7-9 and 10-12.

Female. Total length 4.9, Carapace 2.1 long--1.6 wide, Abdomen 2.8 long--1.9 wide. Pattern distinct, almost same as male. Legs dark yellow, except for femur. Femur dark brown. Leg formula IV, I, II, III. Leg measurements (n = 2): I 6.4 (1.7, 0.5, 1.4, 1.8, 1), II 5.7 (1.3, 0.5, 1.2, 1.7, 1), III 5.2 (1.7, 0.5, 0.8, 1.3, 0.9), IV 7.9 (2.2, 0.7, 1.9, 2.3, 0.8). Epigyne as in Figs. 13-15 and 16-17, with distinct window, median plate slightly protruding, mid part of epigyne with [conjunction]-shaped sclerotisation, receptacula tubule shaped, diameter equal to that of half of window. Septum thin, insemination duct very long, making 6 coils around receptacula. Fertilization duct small, digitiform.


With this paper, Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991) is reported from Turkey for the first time (Bayram et al. 2012). According to the palp and epigyne conformation, this species clearly belongs to the genus Zodarion Walckenaer, 1826. Zodarion sungar (Jocque, 1991) comb. nov. belongs to the lutipes group because of the very long embolus originating at baso-lateral side of the tegulum and strongly coiled spermathecae. The lutipes group contains Z. christae Bosmans, 2009, Z. deltshevi Bosmans, 2009, Z. frenatum Simon, 1884, Z. lutipes (O. P.-Cambridge, 1872) and Z. samos Bosmans, 2009 (Bosmans, 2009). The new combination is clearly distinguished from all other members of the lutipes group by the very large and brush hook shaped median apophysis on the male palp and by the 6 coils of the female spermathecae. Z. sungar comb. nov. resembles Z. luctuosum (O. P.-Cambridge, 1872) and Z. nitidum (Audouin, 1826), but can be distinguished by the shape of the median and tibial apophysis of the male pedipalp and by the form of the epigyne and spermathecae.

Caption: Figs. 1-4. Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991), 1-2 habitus dorsal view, 3-4 ventral view of male and female, respectively.

Caption: Figs. 5-6. Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991), male palpi photographs. 5. ventral view, and 6. retrolateral view.

Caption: Figs. 7-9. Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991), drawings of male palp, 7. ventral view; 8. retrolateral view, and 9. retrolateral tibial apophysis.

Caption: Figs. 10-12. SEM micrographs of male palp of Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991), 10. ventral view; 11. retrolateral view, and 12. retrolateral tibial apophysis.

Caption: Figs. 13-15. Epigyne of Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991) photographs. 13. ventral view; 14. dorsal view, and 15. top view, after maceration in KOH.

Caption: Figs. 16-17. Zodariellum sungar (Jocque, 1991), drawings of epigyne. 16. ventral view, and 17. dorsal view after maceration in KOH.


I am very grateful to Stano Pekar (Czech Republic) and Robert Bosmans (Belgium) for their valuable contributions. Furthermore, I wish to thank Kirikkale University Scientific and Technological Research Laboratories (KUBTAL) for use of the SEM. Last but not least, I want to thank reviewers for their valuable comments.


BAYRAM, A., KUNT, K. B., AND DANISMAN, T. 2012. The Checklist of the Spiders of Turkey.--Version 2012.1 Available from:

KOVBLYUK, M. M. 2003. Spiders of the genus Zodarion (Aranei: Zodariidae) in the fauna of the Crimea. Euroasian Entomol. J. 1: 177-183.

MARUSIK, Y. M., AND FET, V. 2009. A survey of east Palearctic Hersiliola Thorell, 1870 (Araneae, Hersiliidae), with a description of three new genera. ZooKeys 16: 75-114.

PLATNICK, N. 2013. The World Spider Catalog, Version 13.5 American Museum of Natural History Available from: catalog/.html


University of Kirikkale, Faculty of Sciences and Arts, Department of Biology, TR-71451 Kirikkale, Turkey



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Author:Danisman, Tarik
Publication:Florida Entomologist
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Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 1, 2013
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