Pseudouroctonus m. castaneus
Pseudouroctonus m. thompsoni
Pseudouroctonus savassi Francke 2009
Francke 2009: 11-18. Figs. 1-11, 13, 15, map 1, tables 1, 2.
from Cueva de Casa Blanca (N 29° 22’ 37.451” W 101° 02’ 15”), Municipio de
Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila, México, 20 Febuary 2005 (Charley Savvas). Deposited
in the Colección Nacional de Arácnidos (CNAN-T0289), IBUNAM.
.—Differs from all other
Pseudouroctonus in having a single subdistal tooth on the dorsal
edge of the movable finger of the chelicerae (Fig. 5); all other
described species currently placed in that genus have two subdistal
teeth (see “Comparisons”).
Description of the holotype
(Fig.1).—Color. Medium brown, pedipalps and metasoma slightly
darker, especially on the more heavily sclerotized carinae; chelicera,
legs and opisthosomal venter yellow brown.
Carapace. Longer than wide. Median eyes on anterior 35%. Ocular tubercle
low, without superciliary carinae. Median eyes slightly reduced in size
relative to its epigean congeners; 0.2 mm in diameter. Three lateral
ocelli on right side, two on left. Anterior margin broadly bilobed, with
3 pairs of setae. Entire surface with dense, minute granulation, and
with scattered small and medium granules.
Tergites. Anterior half shagreened; posterior half densely, minutely
granular. I-VI without carinae, VII with four longitudinal, coarsely
Sternum. Pentagonal, with five pairs of stout, reddish macrosetae.
Genital operculum. Each side with 6 macrosetae. Genital papillae well
Hemispermatophore. Lamelliform; hooks on distal half of the lamella on a
strongly sclerotized ridge adnate to it (Figs. 2-3). Hemi-mating plug
strongly sclerotized, with distal barb margin smooth (Fig. 4).
Pectines. Ten teeth on each comb. Six middle lamellae on each side.
Fulcra each with approximately five reddish small setae.
Sternites. Smooth except for scattered mediumsized granules along the
sides. Stigmata about four times longer than wide. VII without submedian
carinae; lateral carinae represented by row of few medium granules, with
two stout reddish macrosetae on each one.
Metasoma. Dorsolateral carinae on I-V strong, coarsely granular. Lateral
supramedian carinae on I-IV strong, coarsely granular. Lateral
inframedian carinae on I strong, complete, coarsely granular; on II
present on distal third to half, granular, tapering anteriorly; on III
only a few medium-sized granules distally; on IV absent. Lateral median
carinae on V present on basal two-thirds, moderately strong, coarsely
granular. Ventrolateral carinae on I-V, ventral submedian carinae on
I-IV and ventromedian carina on V strong, coarsely granular. Setation on
I-IV: dorsolaterals 0,0,1,1; lateral supramedian 0,1,1,1; lateral
inframedian 1,0,0,0; ventrolateral 2,2,2,2; ventral submedian 2,3,3,3.
Setation on V: dorsolateral 2, lateromedian 1, ventrolateral 4,
ventromedian 4. Intercarinal spaces shagreened to densely, minutely
Telson. Slightly longer and wider than segment V; smooth to vestigially
granular on ventrobasal region. Aculeus lacking basal microdenticles.
Chelicera. Fixed finger shorter than chela width; movable finger shorter
than chela length. Chela with two macrosetae dorsally near finger
articulation. Ventral edge of both fixed and movable fingers smooth;
movable finger with distinct serrula.
Pedipalp femur. Dorsointernal, dorsoexternal and ventrointernal carinae
strong, coarsely granular; ventroexternal carina obsolete; internomedian
carina represented by few scattered granules on basal half;
externomedian carina present on distal two-thirds, moderately strong,
granular. Orthobothriotaxic Type C. Dorsal face flat, with dense small
and medium granulation. Internal face moderately granular.
Pedipalp patella. Internomedial carina represented by 3-4 granules only,
decreasing in size distally. Dorsointernal, dorsoexternal, external,
ventrointernal and ventroexternal carinae strong, coarsely granular.
Orthobothriotaxia C (Fig. 6). Intercarinal spaces shagreened.
Pedipalp chela (Figs. 7-9). Digital and ventromedian carinae strong,
scabrous to granular; other carinae moderately strong, granular. Fixed
finger with six rows of granules and six inner accessory denticles;
movable finger with seven rows of granules and seven inner accessory
denticles. Orthobothriotaxia C.
Leg III tarsal armature. Basitarsus with a single superior macrosetae
basally (Sb of McWest), lacking the distal superior macroseta (Sd of
McWest). Telotarsus with four distal spinules (sd) and lacking
macrosetae promedially (pm), retromedially (rm) and retrosubterminally (rsub).
Measurements.—See Table 1.
AMERICA. Known from the type locality and from Cueva de la Azufrosa (N 28°
14’ 12.552” W 100°48’ 01.692”), Municipio de Allende, Coahuila, México
Five paratypes: one subadult male,
two juvenile males and two juvenile females, same data as holotype
(CNANT0290 to T0294). Cueva de la Azufrosa (N 28° 10’ W 100° 45’),
Municipio de Allende, Coahuila, México, collected on 29 January 2006, as
follows: 1 adult female, 1 subadult female, 2 juvenile males and 1 juvenile
female (C. Savvas); 2 adult females (C. Savvas and J. Krejca); 1 subadult
female (P. Sprouse).
Paratypical variability.—The variation in size
among the paratypes is presented in Table 2. The larger paratypes (not
adult) are straw-colored, with the pedipalp chela fingers and the
aculeus darker (medium brown); the smaller paratypes are pale,
cream-colored, with the pedipalp chela fingers and the aculeus light
brown. Among the three paratype males, four pectinal combs have 10 teeth
and two combs have 11 teeth; among the two female paratypes the four
pectinal combs have 9 teeth. Like the holotype, the 12 movable fingers
of the chelicera of the six paratypes have a single subdistal tooth.
Likewise, the metasomal setation of the six paratypes is the same as for
the holotype, except for one specimen which shows asymmetry on the
dorsolaterals on II, with 0 on one side and 1 on the other (0 on all
others, including the holotype).
Other specimens examined.—An additional eight specimens belonging to
this species were examined, all from Cueva de la Azufrosa (N 28° 10’ W
100° 45’), Municipio de Allende, Coahuila, México, collected on 29
January 2006, as follows: 1 adult female, 1 subadult female, 2 juvenile
males and 1 juvenile female (C. Savvas); 2 adult females (C. Savvas and
J. Krejca); 1 subadult female (P. Sprouse). One adult female deposited
at the AMNH, all others at CNAN-IBUNAM. The two males have 10 teeth on
each pectinal comb (n=4); the six females have 9 teeth on each pectinal
comb (n=12). All specimens have a single subdistal tooth on the movable
finger of the chelicerae (n=16).
This species is dedicated to Mr. Charley Savvas, a tireless caver who
collected most of the known specimens.
Comparisons.—The taxonomic history of the
“uroctonoid” group of vaejovid scorpions was reviewed by Francke and
Savary (2006). It currently contains three genera and 21 species:
Uroctonus Thorell with 3 species, Uroctonites Williams and
Savary with 4 species, and Pseudouroctonus Stahnke with 14
species. Of all the previously described species in this complex, only
two have a single subdistal tooth on the movable finger of the chelicera;
all others have two subdistal teeth. Those two species are currently
placed in Uroctonites, namely Uroctonites sequoia (Gertsch
and Soleglad) and Uroctonites montereus (Gertsch and Soleglad).
These two species were originally described as belonging to Uroctonus
Gertsch and Soleglad, 1972), and were subsequently transferred to
Uroctonites when that genus was created on the basis of
distinctive telotarsal armature (Williams and Savary, 1991). In
addition, Williams and Savary (1991) indicated that Uroctonites
shows a reduction or loss of the sclerotized mating plug of the
spermatophore (or a hemi-plug in the dissection of a hemispermatophore),
and the lamellar hooks on the spermatophore are located basally.
Pseudouroctonus savvasi has hair-like macrosetae on the telotarsi,
rather than spiniform setae; has a strongly sclerotized mating plug
(Fig. 4), and has elevated lamellar hooks that are adnate to the lamella
(Figs. 2-3), and thus clearly does not belong in Uroctonites,
despite sharing similar cheliceral dentition with two of the four
species currently placed in that genus. Pseudouroctonus savvasi
appears most closely related to P. apacheanus, from which it
differs, in addition to the number of subdistal teeth on the cheliceral
movable finger, as follows: (a) in size (Table 1 and Fig. 10); (b) in
the slight reduction of the size of the ocelli on the carapace (Figs.
11, 12); (c) on the hemispermatophores of P. savvasi the paired
dorsal hooks are on a sclerotized ridge extending past the mid-point of
the lamella, whereas on P. apacheanus the hooks are on the basal
fifth to fourth of the lamella; (d) on adult males the ratio pedipalp
chela L/carapace L in P. savvasi is approximately 2, whereas on
P. apacheanus it is approximately 1.6; the ratio pedipalp chela
L/chela W is 3.3 versus 2.8 (Figs. 13 and 14); and the underhand L/fixed
finger length is 1.6 versus 1.3 [i.e., the chelae of P. savvasi
are longer and narrower].
Remarks.—Although I did not receive any details of the scorpion
collections at Cueva de la Azufrosa (Fig. 16), some interesting facts
were gathered at Cueva de Casa Blanca, the type locality. First, Peter
Sprouse wrote on 21 February 2005:
“We discovered a very interesting cave two days ago
near Cd. Acuña, Coahuila. It has a hydrogen sulfide stream in it,
and is very extensive. It also has scorpions, which appear to have
only vestigial eyes ...”
Subsequently, Andy Gluesenkamp wrote on 23 February
Rhaphidophoridae]. All specimens were found roughly 30-150m
from the entrance.”
“Charley and I saw a few individuals that escaped
capture. All of them were small (1.2 cm) and very pale. All exuvia
were collected under rock flakes. Most live individuals were
collected either under rock flakes lying on guano; under rocks next
to, or on small rock “islands” in, a small sulfurous stream below
the main passage ...Charley collected one individual on a wall where
it was eating a small