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

Taxonomy

 

Numerous short papers and regional studies have been published on the vaejovid fauna of the USA.  However, these have mostly dealt with single species or groups of related species. Current knowledge of the diverse vaejovid fauna of Mexico is largely restricted to a monograph on the scorpion fauna of Baja California (Williams 1980). Few papers have addressed the vaejovids of the Mexican mainland since Hoffmann’s (1931) Los Scorpiones de Mexico. There may be two reasons for the paucity of comprehensive monographic syntheses of the vaejovid genera:  

  1. the generic limits remain unclear
  2. there is insufficient material upon which to base revisionary studies

Although there are large holdings of vaejovid specimens in several North American collections (see Table 1 below), many currently recognized species are known from one or a few specimens, collected from an equally small number of localities, giving only a partial view of levels of endemism. Extensive fieldwork (especially within mainland Mexico) is required to obtain a better understanding of the distributions and geographical variation of currently recognized species and enable reliable diagnostic characters, invariant across the geographical range, to be identified for their delimitation.

Table 1.  Principal collections of Vaejovidae. Letters follow Table 1, except P = Vaejovis. Acronyms as follows: CAS = California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA; AMNH = American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY; BMNH = British Museum of Natural History, London, UK; USNM = United States National Museum, Washington, DC; MNHN = Museum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France; MIZT = Museo el Istituto di Zoologia Sistematica della Universitá, Turin, Italy; ZMB = Zoologisches Museum, Humboldt Universität, Berlin, Germany; MCZ = Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA; UNAM = Instituto de Biología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico City, Mexico; NRS = Naturhistoriska Riksmuseet, Stockholm, Sweden; ZMH = Zoologisches Museum Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany; NMW = Naturhistorisches Museum Wien, Vienna, Austria; INDRE = Instituto Nacional de Diagnostico y Referencia Epidemilogica, Mexico City, Mexico; IPN = Instituto Politecnico Nacional, Mexico City, Mexico; TMMA = Texas Memorial Museum, Austin, TX; FMNH = Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, IL; BYU = Brigham Young University, Provo, UT; FSCA = Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Gainesville, FL; PM = Prague Museum, Prague, Hungary; WTAMU = West Texas A&M University, Canyon, TX; ANSP = Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, PA.

 

Type  Specimens by Genus

Estimated Non-type Material

 

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

P

O

Total

Specimen lots

% identified

%databased

CAS

1

24

7

19

3

 

1

2

33

1

90

9700

70

0

AMNH

 

9

7

6

2

 

3

1

21

 

49

5000

60

0

BMNH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10

 

10

50

80

0

USNM

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

3

 

5

75

80

0

MNHN

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

3

 

4

100

80

0

MIZT

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

3

30

90

0

ZMB

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

2

 

3

50

90

0

MCZ

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

2

200

80

100

UNAM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

2

1200

40

100

NRS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

 

2

25

50

0

ZMH

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

40

60

0

NMW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

1

25

40

0

INDRE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

700

10

0

IPN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

500

10

0

TMMA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

200

90

0

FMNH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

150

90

0

BYU

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

100

80

0

FSCA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

100

50

0

PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

100

30

0

WTAMU

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

100

100

50

ANSP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

50

30

0

TOTAL

1

36

15

25

5

1

4

5

80

1

172

18,495

62

8

Literature Cited:

Hoffmann, C.C. 1931. Monografias para la entomología médica de México. Monografia Num. 2, Los escorpiones de México. Primera parte: Diplocentridae, Chactidae, Vejovidae. Anales del Instituto de Biologia Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México 2: 291–408.

Williams, S.C. 1980. Scorpions of Baja California, Mexico, and adjacent islands. Occasional Papers of the Califorinia Academy of Sciences 135: 1–127.

 


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