REVSYS: SYSTEMATICS OF THE
SCORPION FAMILY VAEJOVIDAE
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What are vaejovids?

Family Vaejovidae
Genus Paravaejovis

Genus Paruroctonus
Genus Pseudouroctonus
Genus Serradigitus
Genus Smeringurus
Genus Syntropis
Genus Uroctonites
Genus Uroctonus
Genus Vaejovis
Genus Vejovoidus

Why study vaejovids?

Diversity
Endemism
Taxonomy
Phylogeny
Biogeography

Bibliography

Evolution, Biogeography and Conservation

 

The combination of stenotopic substratum preferences, associated ecomorphological adaptations for life on specific substrata, and a sedentary lifestyle, has several implications for the evolution and biogeography of vaejovids: 

  1. It suggests that the same or similar ecomorphological adaptations could have evolved convergently in distantly related species that inhabit the same or similar substrata.
  2. It suggests that species with specific substratum preferences should be narrowly endemic to geographical regions with suitable substrata and that vicariance of the populations inhabiting these regions, followed by speciation, might have been induced through disruption of those substrata (Prendini 2001).

For these reasons, vaejovids represent an appropriate model for testing adaptational and biogeographical hypotheses, including the evolution of ecomorphotypes and the historical biogeography of the American southwest deserts. A revision and phylogenetic analysis of the vaejovid radiation will enhance not only our understanding of diversity and biogeography in the arid zone of southwestern North America, but of the evolution and speciation of arid-adapted arthropods in general. 

 Literature Cited:

Prendini, L. 2001. Substratum specialization and speciation in southern African scorpions: The Effect Hypothesis revisited. In: Fet, V. & Selden, P.A. (Eds.) Scorpions 2001. In Memoriam Gary A. Polis. British Arachnological Society, Burnham Beeches, Bucks, UK, 113138.

 


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