Cyrtobill darwini, a new species in a new orb-weaving spider genus from Australia (Araneae: Araneidae: Cyrtophorinae)

WA Museum Records and Supplements | Updated 1 years ago

ABSTRACT – A new monotypic genus of orb-weaving spider (Araneidae) with Cyrtobill darwini as type species is described from Australia. A reduced piriform spinning field of the anterior lateral spinnerets and the construction of a horizontal, dome-shaped orb-web suggest a placement of Cyrtobill in the araneid subfamily Cyrtophorinae Simon, 1895. However, the morphology of the male pedipalp is unique within the Araneidae as the cymbium has a basal, semicircular, sclerotised rim that creates a cymbial concavity. Cyrtobill darwini are small spiders of less than 5 mm body length and occur mainly in arid habitats such as spinifex grassland in the northern half of Australia (mainly north of 30°S latitude). Adult spiders have been found all year round; however, the species seems to be predominantly winter mature. We propose new generic combinations within the Australasian Cyrtophorinae: Cyrtophora crassipes (Rainbow, 1897), comb. nov.; Cyrtophora rainbowi (Roewer, 1955), comb. nov.; Cyrtophora trigona (L. Koch, 1871), comb. nov. (all originally described from Australia); and Cyrtophora gazellae (Karsch, 1878), comb. nov. (described from Papua New Guinea). In addition, we provide an updated species list for Australian Cyrtophora Simon, 1864.

Author(s) Volker W. Framenau and Nikolaj Scharff
Records 25 : Part 3
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