Overview

Comprehensive Description

Dolichognatha albida ( Simon )

Figs 17-28

Homalopoltys albidus Simon 1895: 894. Holotype♀ , Sri Lanka , Colombo . In MNHNP , No.16281 , examined. NEW COMBINATION.

Other material examined. THAILAND : ( Central Thailand ) 3 ♀,RMNH (ex coll. CLD ), Khao Yai National Park , 5.iii.1986 , C.L. & P.R. Deeleman , c. 1000 m , in big horizontal web between leaves, no hub ; 2 j, RMNH (ex coll. CLD ), similar location data, 'near waterfalls’ ; 1 j , RMNH (ex coll. CLD ), Erewan Waterfalls National Park , 15-16.iii.1986 , C.L. & P.R. Deeleman , evergreen .

Comments. The female from Colombo discussed here is believed to be the type of H. albidus, but in the publication the location is given only as "Ins. Taprobane". For this species there is no contradiction, merely less information than on the specimen label. But in the case of H. incanescens (below), where the town locality is in disagreement with the original description, one of the additional specimens present in the H. albidus vial provides circumstantial evidence supporting the type status of these Homalopoltys specimens. This specimen is a subadult male Poltys C.L. Koch, likely to be the Poltys‘male’ from Sri Lanka Simon described in the same paper (1895: 891, fig. 955). Simon’s illustration and his statement that the male lacked a paracymbial hook (which would have been quite obvious in an adult male Poltys , Smith 2005 fig. 10) are indications that the specimen Simon discussed was indeed sub-adult.

Diagnosis. Female. Abdomen apically with ‘drip’ point (Figs 19, 25); copulatory openings on epigynum set away from posterior margin in ventral view, ducts make a horseshoe shape (Fig. 26).

FIGURES 17-28. Dolichognatha albida. 17-23, female ( holotype ). 17, prosoma, lateral. 18, 19, abdomen lateral, dorsal. 20, part of prosoma, frontal. 21, carapace, dorsal. 22, left leg one showing prolateral macrosetae. 23, prosoma, ventral. 24, 25, female ( RMNH ), abdomen lateral, dorsal. 26-28, female epigynum ( holotype ). 26, ventral. 27, posterior. 28, dorsal (internal genitalia). Scale lines 0.5 mm for somatic parts, 0.1 mm for genitalia.

Male . Unknown.

Description. Female ( holotype ). Carapace (Figs 17, 20, 21): length 0.96 (range 0.88-0.98), width 0.73, height 0.55; carapace humped, broadly pear-shaped in dorsal view, caput poorly differentiated in outline but strongly domed. Chelicerae (Figs 17, 23): promargin bears two definite teeth plus large intermediate where rows meet; retromargin bears one large and 4 small teeth grouped distally. Labium: distinctly mounded anteriorly. Sternum (Fig. 23): strongly convex, especially anteriorly. Eyes (Figs 17, 20, 21). AME : 0.10, PME: 0.08, ALE: 0.07, PLE: 0.08, AME–AME : 0.035, AME–ALE : 0.04, PME–PME : 0.04, PME–PLE : 0.06, ALE–PLE : 0.025; no reflective tapeta visible in type specimen, but visible in some females from Thailand. Legs. I: 3.51, II: 3.04, III: 1.73, IV: 2.20; femur I with one strong plus second weaker prolateral macrosetae at mid point (Fig. 22), distal dorsal macroseta missing. Abdomen (Figs 18, 19): length 2.29, width 1.18; anterior bluntly pointed, point more gently attenuated in Thai specimens (Figs 24, 25), tip often wrinkled; post genital mound strongly produced, posterior surface distinctly flattened. Epigynum (Figs 26, 27): copulatory openings set away from posterior margin in ventral view, ducts viewed through cuticle make a horseshoe shape; in posterior view the internal margins of the lateral plates diverge gradually towards copulatory openings. Internal genitalia (Fig. 28): robust copulatory ducts pass anteromedially around spermathecae to enter posterodorsally; spermathecae with globular head, posterior part hidden by copulatory ducts. Colour in alcohol: creamy-white, traces of dark colouring on dorsal carapace and around eyes; dark coloration more extensive on recent specimens, but still lack any sign of leg stripes. Abdomen pale except for darker spot on posterior flat of post-genital mound; recent specimens have traces of pattern dorsally and anterior tip with traces of black.

Distribution. Dolichognatha albida is recorded from localities in Thailand and Sri Lanka.

  • HELEN M. SMITH (2008): Synonymy of Homalopoltys (Araneae: Araneidae) with the genus Dolichognatha (Araneae: Tetragnathidae) and descriptions of two new species. Zootaxa 1775, 1-24: 11-13, URL:http://www.mapress.com/zootaxa/2008/f/zt01775p024.pdf
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