Nav: Home

Family of scaffold web spiders increased with ~20 percent following discovery of 43 new species

October 27, 2016

Recent study into spider individuals collected from across China, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Madagascar over the past 15 years, revealed the striking number of 43 scaffold web spiders that have stayed hidden from science until now. By describing the new species in a paper published in the open access journal ZooKeys, scientists from Sichuan University and the Chinese Academy of Sciences increase the number of a scaffold web spider family (Nesticidae), known from around the world, with about twenty percents.

The studied family of scaffold web spiders is a relatively small group of arachnids, which can be found at almost any locality, apart from Siberia, Central Asia, Northern and Southern Africa and places at high latitude. Prior to the study of Drs Yucheng Lin, Francesco Ballarin and Shuqiang Li, the species counted 245 in total, 12 of which are extinct and known from fossils only. A curious peculiarity in these spiders is their comb of serrated bristles, located on their rear legs, used to pull silk bands for their webs.

Although large-scale taxonomic surveys of scaffold web spiders have long remained scarce, recently the interest towards spider research in China and Southeast Asia has seen a significant rise. Thus, over the last 15 years, Chinese, American and European arachnologists have carried out several surveys, ending up with precious samples. As a result, Dr Yucheng Lin and his team followed with deeper morphological and molecular studies to discover remarkable diversity.

In their work, the researchers have also established a new genus (Speleoticus) for five previously known, but misplaced species, which spend a lot of their time taking shelter in caves.

The majority of scaffold web spiders occur in temperate areas of the Holarctic realm, where the species tend to be medium-sized, long-legged, and prefer cave-like environments. The species found in the tropical and subtropical areas are, on the other hand, usually smaller, with shorter legs, and can be quite often spotted outside, where they crawl in forest litter, on grass, and under stones.
-end-
Original source:

Lin Y, Ballarin F, Li S (2016) A survey of the spider family Nesticidae (Arachnida, Araneae) in Asia and Madagascar, with the description of forty-three new species. ZooKeys 627: 1-168. https://doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.627.8629

Pensoft Publishers

Related Spiders Articles:

Researchers find hurricanes drive the evolution of more aggressive spiders
Researchers at McMaster University who rush in after storms to study the behavior of spiders have found that extreme weather events such as tropical cyclones may have an evolutionary impact on populations living in storm-prone regions, where aggressive spiders have the best odds of survival.
Baby spiders really are watching you
Baby jumping spiders can hunt prey just like their parents do because they have vision nearly as good.
Solitude breeds aggression in spiders (rather than vice versa)
Spiders start out social but later turn aggressive after dispersing and becoming solitary, according to a study publishing July 2 in the open-access journal PLOS Biology by Raphael Jeanson of the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) in France, and colleagues.
Spiders risk everything for love
A biology study finds that blue jays can easily spot wolf spiders engaged in their courtship rituals.
Hold the mustard: What makes spiders fussy eaters
It might be one of nature's most agile and calculating hunters, but the wolf spider won't harm an insect that literally leaves a bad taste in its mouth, according to new research by a team of Wake Forest University sensory neuroscientists, including C.J.
More Spiders News and Spiders Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Erasing The Stigma
Many of us either cope with mental illness or know someone who does. But we still have a hard time talking about it. This hour, TED speakers explore ways to push past — and even erase — the stigma. Guests include musician and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas Insel, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, anxiety and depression researcher Olivia Remes, and entrepreneur Sangu Delle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...