Kerala

New species of spider and millipede discovered

Carrhotus tholpettyensis, the new species of spider

Carrhotus tholpettyensis, the new species of spider

A team, led by researchers of Department of Zoology, Christ College, Irinjalakuda, discovered a new species of spider from the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary and a new species of millipede from the University of Calicut campus, Tenhipalam.

Carrhotus tholpettyensis, the new species of spider was found from the moist deciduous forest of Tholpetty range of the wildlife sanctuary in Western Ghats, a robust biodiversity hotspot.

This nocturnal jumping spider retreats to hide under leaves during day time and comes out only in the night for feeding. So far 287 species of jumping spiders are reported from India, says the study led by Sudhikumar A.V., head, Department of Zoology, Christ College, Irinjalakuda; and Sudhin P.P., Assistant Professor, Department of Zoology, Vimala College, Thrissur. Nafin K.S., research scholar, Centre for Animal Taxonomy and Ecology (CATE), Christ College, Irinjalakuda, and John Caleb, arachnologist from Loyola College, Chennai also participated.

“The length of its female is 6 mm and male is 5 mm. The dark bodies of both male and female sport scattered white spots and marks. There are white crescent marks on the head and abdomen of both sexes. Orange scales are present around the eyes,” says Mr. Sudhikumar.

It has been named after the forest range Tholpetty from where it was collected. This finding is published in the latest volume of international scientific journal Arthropoda Selecta published from Russia.

Delarthrum anomalans, the new species of millipede.

Delarthrum anomalans, the new species of millipede.

New millipede

As a part of the diversity exploration of millipedes of Kerala, a team, led by researchers from Department of Zoology, Christ College, Irinjalakuda,discovered a new species of millipede from Calicut University campus. This new species, named as Delarthrum anomalans, belongs to the family Paradoxosomatidae, a group of minute millipedes.

“Its length ranges up to 17 mm in male and 15 mm in female. It has a glossy dark body with light yellow coloured ventral side. The body is composed of 20 segments with 52 legs. These flat millipedes live under leaf litter. They hide beneath the soil during the span of the dry period and resurface only in the wet season,“ said Mr. Sudhikumar of the team.

A total of 275 species of millipedes are reported from India till this day. Aswathy M. Das, research scholar, CATE, Christ College, Irinjalakuda; Usha Bhagirathan, Assistant Professor, Department of Zoology, Kerala Varma College, Thrissur; and Sergei Golovatch, Myriapodologist, Russian Academy of Science, were included in this study. This finding is published in the current volume of the taxonomic science journal Zootaxa .


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Printable version | Feb 13, 2022 8:53:52 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/new-species-of-spider-and-millipede-discovered/article38383375.ece