Coremiocnemis cunicularia (Simon 1892)

West, Rick C. & Nunn, Steven C., 2010, 2443, Zootaxa 2443, pp. 1-64 : 9-16

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Coremiocnemis cunicularia (Simon 1892)


Coremiocnemis cunicularia (Simon 1892) View in CoL

( Figs 1–30, 217)

Phlogius cunicularius Simon, 1892a: 279 .

Coremiocnemis cunicularia Simon, 1892b: 146 View in CoL .

Coremiocnemis validus Abraham, 1924: 1117 , pl. 6, figs 27–28; C. v. Smith, 1987a: 67, f. 1–14; C. v. Smith, 1987b: 120, pl. 3, fig. 17h.

Types: Phlogius cunicularius Simon 1892 mature female lectotype, AR4547, Penang Hill (= Bukit Bendera, 5°25' N, 100°16' E), Penang Island   GoogleMaps , Penang, West Malaysia, MNHN–images (F. Vol, pers. comm.)–examined; immature female paralectotype, AR4547, Penang Hill, Penang Island, Penang, West Malaysia, MNHN– images (F. Vol, pers. comm.)–examined.

Other material: Coremiocnemis cunicularia (Simon 1892) , female, ZRC ARA.739, Penang Hill, Penang Island, Penang, West Malaysia, col. D. Goh, 20 Sept. 1989, RMBR –images (D. Court, pers. comm.)–examined; female, S83742, Penang Hill, Penang Island , Penang, West Malaysia, col. D. Goh, 11 Oct. 2000, QM; female, S83744 View Materials , Penang Hill , Penang Island , Penang, West Malaysia, col. M. Hart, 3 Mar. 1999, QM –examined; formerly identified as C. validus (Abraham 1924) , 1 male, 1 female, 1924.II 27:23, 1924.II 27:24, respectively, Penang Hill , Penang Island , Penang, West Malaysia, col. H. N. Ridley, no date, NHM –images (R. Raven, pers. comm.)–examined; formerly identified as C. validus (Abraham 1924) , 2 female, 3 egg sacs with juveniles, ZRC ARA.740, Penang Hill , Penang Island , Penang, West Malaysia, col. H. N. Ridley, no date, RMBR –images (D. Court, pers. comm.)–examined; 2 female, ZRC ARA.68, Penang Hill , Penang Island , Penang, West Malaysia, col. H. N. Ridley, no date, RMBR –images (D. Court, pers. comm.)–examined; 1 female, ZRC ARA.335, Penang Hill, Penang Island, Penang, West Malaysia, col. H. N. Ridley, no date, RMBR –images (D. Court, pers. comm.)–examined .

Note: Despite multiple efforts to personally examine the type jar, including retrieval of information and assistance by MNHN curator Dr C. Rollard, the authors were unable to image the types for this revision, thus a nontype ( RMBR ZRC ARA.739) is utilized herein. The holotype jar contains two specimens from Penang Island, Penang, West Malaysia and was deposited in the MNHN. In 1983, Raven had examined the type in Paris and at that time, only one specimen existed in the jar ( Raven 2005). However, in late 2004, Striffler and Von Wirth reported two specimens in the type jar. Unfortunately, in his original description, Simon had only quoted a size of “ 25–30mm ” ( Simon 1892a), a rough measurement of either the cephalothorax, or the cephalothorax including chelicerae, or entire body length. This was the only measurement Simon ever provided on this species. No subsequent work has elaborated further on the type. Of the two specimens now within the type jar in the MNHN, there are dissected pieces of anatomy for reference from one animal, with only the original data label of Simon’s pertaining to the one animal. In light of two specimens within the jar, the authors herein designate the largest specimen (dissected) as the lectotype and the smaller specimen considered a paralectotype.

Etymology: The feminine form of a Latin technical military term cunicularius meaning ‘miner’ or ‘pioneer’, derived from cuniculus ‘a mine’ and also the word for ‘rabbit’ and ‘rabbithole’, which reflects the spider’s fossorial habits.

Diagnosis: Differs from C. hoggi sp. nov. in having distinct white/cream bands along the distal segments of all legs (not obvious in C. hoggi sp. nov.), spermathecal morphology with lateral lobe shafts clear entirely and integral in form, reduced length of leg IV setation (additionally setation piloerect, not curved), lyra bacillae much thinner and scopula on prolateral metatarsi IV division extending 1/3 distally (3/ 4 in C. hoggi sp. nov.). Differs from C. obscura sp. nov. in having retrolateral coxae IV setal brushes medially (only 3–4 setae in C. obscura sp. nov.) and scopula on prolateral metatarsi IV division only extending 1/3 distally (1/ 2 in C. obscura sp. nov.). Differs from C. valida in the absence of ventral proximal black studs border sternum on coxae III and IV and scopula on prolateral metatarsi IV division only extending 1/3 distally (1/ 2 in C. valida ). Differs from C. kotacana sp. nov. in short lengths of intercheliceral pegs and retrolateral basomedial cheliceral spines (long in C. kotacana sp. nov.), also in thinner anterior build. Differs from C. gnathospina sp. nov., C. brachyramosa sp. nov., and C. jeremyhuffi sp. nov. as a group in the presence of apically swollen spermathecal lobes with clear shafts, scopula on retrolateral metatarsi IV division extending 3/4 distally (only extending 1/ 3 in above 3 species), retrolateral setae on metatarsi IV with distinct recurved form, long bottlebrush setae on tibiae and particularly metatarsi IV (absent in above 3 species).

Description: Female nontype (RMBR ZRC ARA.739) with body length: 45.48.

Color (in life, Fig. 1): Carapace, chelicerae, coxae and trochantera cinnamon, as are anterior distal leg segments (pat., tib., met., tar.). Femora jet black. Ventrally dark brown to black. All leg segments with distinct cream banding distally. Long setae on posterior legs dark cinnamon red.

Carapace ( Fig. 2): length 17.95, width 14.95 (width across anterior edge 9.35). Fovea 1.75 wide, procurved, deep, smaller in width than OT. Distance from anterior carapace to fovea, 12.35. Carapace with 4 discernible hair types (C1 to C4): type C1 long, needleform pallids border carapace entirely: type C2 long brown spiniforms, located along posterior carapace border only: type C3 short, thin wavy pallids, forming basis of carapace mat: type C4 emerge from what look to be bothrial collars, largely spiniform, pallid, aligned in uniform arrangement: (>5) along anterior edge of each radial groove, (>4) along anterior edge of each thoracic groove, (>4) along anterior edge of each caput groove and a line of>4 along medial caput ridge (between OT and fovea).>2 more behind each side of the OT, nearest median caput row.

Eyes ( Fig. 5): ocular tubercle; length 1.83, width 2.62. Anterior row transverse. Posterior row slightly recurved. Eyes: AME: 0.67/0.68, ALE: 0.67/0.25, PLE: 0.56/0.34, PME: 0.36/0.21. Inter–ocular distances: AME–AME: 0.31, AME–ALE: 0.21, AME–PME: 0.25, ALE–ALE: 1.99, ALE–PME: 0.36, PME–PME: 1.48, PME–PLE: 0.09, PLE–PLE: 2.11, ALE–PLE: 0.26. OT hair types: 8 to 10 C2’s directly posterior to AME’s, 4 to 5 between PME and centre of eye tubercle (directly behind each AME), 10 C2’s (slightly smaller) along posterior OT edge. 10–12 along median anterior OT surface. OT entirely covered in short weak, pallid setae (C3), directionally point to centre of OT, posteriorly and anteriorly. Lateral small pallids (C3) very sparse with no uniform direction/random point.

Chelicerae (right, Figs 10 and 12): length 10.65, width at base of each lobe 4.91 (bases widest point, dorsally). Ectal lyrate region ( Fig. 11): a series of strikers (>80), in>8 horizontal rows. Strongest/longest strikers on lowest rows. Each striker needleform, with some filiform ends. Teeth 15 (>2 smaller teeth between apical teeth 2 and 3 on left chelicerae, 1 small tooth between apical teeth 3 and 4 on right),>50 basomesals. Intercheliceral pegs (>6 larger,>20 smaller) in tight cluster on basodorsal surface. Retrolateral face basomedially with small cluster of short but strong spines (>6) (some broken, but bases easily visible, Fig. 9), point distad.

Maxillae ( Fig. 14): prolaterally plano-convex, anterior lobe well pronounced, many cuspules (> 190) on inner basoventral surface. Lyra ( Fig. 15): many bacilliform rods (>160) form dense, ovoid patch prolaterally (3.85 long, 1.94 high), lowest row with>25 bacillae, longest rods in centre of lowest row. Rods paddle-shaped (paddles up to 0.34 long) with medium to long shafts (length including paddles up to 0.69), largest with distal blades (longest distal blades>0.07). At widest point, lyrate patch 10–11 rows deep, smallest rods dorsally. Posterior end of patch truncate, anterior end slightly pointed distad/rounded. Immediately above maxillary suture>55 small spines ( Fig. 16) on anterior margin of maxillae, rows unordered. Labium ( Fig. 8): length 2.25, width 3.53. many small cuspules (>650) along anterior 1/3 surface. One hair type on labium (L1): long, reasonably dark spiniform in shape, curving distally toward anterior, most concentrated along lateral borders. Setae longest along anterior edge (>35).

Sternum ( Fig. 3): length 8.21, width 7.52. Slightly wider posteriorly than anteriorly, with 4 discernible hair types (S1 to S4): type S1 longest, thickest, darker basally, becoming pallid distally, entire but sparse over sternum: type S2 elongate spiniforms, entirely dark, border sternum, most concentrated posteriorly: type S3 with same morphology as S1, although only 1/4–1/2 length by comparison, entire but sparse over sternum: type S4 short thin pallids, forming basis of sternal mat. Posteriorly between left and right cox. IV, sternal bor- der slightly acuminate, lateral sternal points also slightly acuminate. Sternal sigilla ( Fig. 3): 3 pairs (not including labio-sternal sigilla), posterior medium in size; right length 1.25, width 0.53, left length 1.16, width 0.47. Ovoid morphology, 2.43 apart, 2.15–2.00 from sternal margin. Median pair 1/2 size of posterior, similar in form, 0.6–0.8 of their length from sternal margin. Anterior pair 1/3 size of posterior, somewhat obscured, border sternal margin. Labio-sternal sigilla large, as big as PSS.

Leg setation: All segments distally with cream band of short blunt setae. Leg IV entirely with distinctly longer setae, most noticeable on tib. and met. IV, giving a “bottlebrush” appearance. Retrolaterally on met. IV, longer setae show distinct recurvature. Long recurved setae distinct on tar. IV.

Legs: formula (length); IV, I, II, III: (width) III, IV, I, II. Leg RF ~ 78.61. Leg lengths (fem., pat., tib., met., tar., total): palp: 10.51, 6.35, 7.15, 0.00, 6.87, 30.88. I: 14.67, 8.75, 11.27, 9.14, 6.60, 50.43. II: 13.01, 7.83, 9.03, 8.94, 6.04, 44.85. III: 12.05, 6.42, 7.67, 9.98, 5.84, 41.96. IV: 16.21, 8.22, 15.39, 17.35, 6.98, 64.15. Leg mid–widths (fem., pat., tib., met., tar., total.): palp: 2.64, 2.66, 2.40, 0.00, 2.35, 10.05. I: 3.42, 3.55, 2.78, 2.12, 2.18, 14.05. II: 3.34, 3.18, 2.49, 2.26, 2.19, 13.46. III: 3.78, 3.38, 2.90, 2.41, 2.43, 14.90. IV: 3.74, 3.52, 3.15, 2.38, 2.00, 14.79. Tar. IV shows transverse weakening ( Fig. 22).

Scopula: met., tar. I–III undivided, met., tar. IV divided ( Fig. 21). Met. I: entire, II: 4/5, III: 2/3, IV: 1/3 prolateral side of division, 3/4 outer retrolateral side ( Figs 20–22). Tar. IV with wider /incrassate retrolateral scopulate field than seen prolaterally, noted from dorsal view ( Fig. 19). Coxae ( Fig. 3): some small black thorns prolatero-dorsally, no thorns retrolaterally on I–IV. Coxae easily seen dorsally. I longest, ca. 1.2 times length of II. IV widest, as long as III, basally rectangular with rounded corners. Coxae with small ventral thorns prolaterally on I–IV. I–III ventrally with many long thick blunt setae proximally, pallid. No short black setae. IV with mixture of long thick blunt setae entirely, pallid intermixed with shorter thin pallid setae. Ventral I–IV gently sloping anteriorly. Retrolateral setation: I–III with median narrow light brush, IV as in I–III, with median narrow brush. I–IV retrolaterally lack ventral ledge. Ventral measurements for coxae: palp– length 7.45, width 4.67; I–7.55, 3.78; II–5.53, 4.36; III–6.05, 3.43; IV–7.25, 4.56.

Trochantera: palp–length 2.62, width 2.95; I–2.95, 3.60; II–3.33, 3.33; III–3.10, 3.29; IV–3.90, 3.99.

Trichobothria: Tarsi: on all tarsi basal filiform field slightly wider than clavate field, merges evenly. Clavates on tar. I in distal 2/3 (>30), long filiforms only in basal 1/2, shorter filiforms intermixed with clavates distally. Clavate extent on tar. II–IV cf. I, in distal 2/3. Shorter filiforms for length. Short epitrichobothrial field on tar. I shorter than clavates, uniform height for length. Tarsal organ not evident on legs I–IV under stereoscope (up to 64X). Tar. I with field 3.98 long, 0.76 wide distally, 0.95 wide proximally. Tar. IV with field 4.21 long, 0.55 wide distally, 0.95 proximally. Metatarsi: trichobothrial field not detected. Tibia: Tib. I prolaterally and proximally with short, possibly clavate trichobothria (>20 per 0.25mm squared) with patch 0.71 long, 0.45 wide, clearly pallid:>6 filiforms detected in semicircular pattern proximally to clavate patch. Tib. IV prolaterally and proximally with short dark clavates (>20 per 0.25mm squared) with patch 0.67 long and 1.35 wide:>6 filiforms detected in semi circular pattern proximally to clavate patch.

Spines: met. I with 1 DV, met. II with 1 DV, 1 DPV, 1 DRV, met. III with 2 DV, 1 DPV, 1 DRV, 1 DD, met. IV with 2 DV, 1 DPV, 1 DRV, 1 DD.

Claws: paired claws on all legs and palpal claw unarmed. Reduced third claw on leg IV.

Abdomen ( Figs 4, 7): ovular, elongated, yellow brown (in alcohol), with 4 discernible hair types (A1 to A4): Dorsally with 3 hair types: type A1 long, dark, but distally pallid: type A2 mid-length, also dark, but distally spiniform: type A3 form dense mat of abdomen, mid-length, uniformly dark, but not spiniform. Longest hairs (A1) more concentrated posteriorly toward spinnerets, point distad. Ventral hair types similar to dorsal, although types A2, A3 more dense entirely. Hair type A4 ( Fig. 6) in very dense patch (2.75 length, 3.65 width), trapezoid shaped, immediately posterior to pedicel between median regions of cox. IV. Hairs medium length, wavy, jet black.

Genitalia: epigastric fold 4.62 ( Fig. 7). Spermathecae ( Fig. 17): paired but not fused, separated by 0.62 (width including spermatheca 1.62), bilobular apically, each lobe with strong apical rounded appendages: lateral apical widths 0.51 (left)–0.49 (right): medial apical widths 0.35 (left)–0.34 (right), heavily sclerotized: highly distinct, compared with weakly sclerotized/clear spermathecal shafts. Lobes apically swollen, lateral lobes (including shaft length) about as long as medials (0.98–1.02). Right medial lobe with additional bud (0.11 in width), about 3/4 proximally from base of spermathecal shaft. Epigastric fold extends ca. 2/3 length of medial spermathecal lobes.

Spinnerets: PMS: length 2.18, width (medially) 1.05. PLS: section lengths; basal 3.76, medial 2.89, apical 4.05. PLS section widths (medially); basal 2.03, medial 1.46, apical 1.25. Spinnerets with 2 discernible hair types (SP1, SP2): SP1 very short and distally blunt pallid, covers both pairs ventrally, second form (SP2), very similar but up to two times longer, dorsally on all segments.

Distribution and natural history: To date, all conspecifics of C. cunicularia have come from Penang Hill, Penang Island, Penang, West Malaysia. C. cunicularia is a fossorial theraphosid that constructs its burrow retreat in sloped ground in shaded areas of montane tropical rainforest ( Fig. 29) at elevations of 600–790 meters. Depending on the size of the specimen, burrows range between 30 to 80 cm in depth, terminating in an enlarged flask-like chamber, burrow opening is simple with small traces of silk around the entrance (R. West, pers. obs.) ( Fig. 30). Males were found in February.

Remarks: All of Abraham’s (1924) “ C. validus ” specimens were examined (from both the NHM and RMBR) and found to belong to C. cunicularia . Two individual specimens held in the RMBR are not from the original Ridley collection, are not from Penang and do not fit into the genus Coremiocnemis . Regarding Abraham’s male ( Fig. 23), although both of the distal emboli are broken ( Figs 26–28) and presence or absense of a distal kiss curl in this species could not be ascertained, informative traits of interest were noted in the male. The lyrate bacillae on the prolateral maxillary surface of the male are shorter than in females ( Figs 24, 25), a trait also seen in other Coremiocnemis described herein, also within some Lyrognathus ( West and Nunn 2010) .


Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research


Queensland Museum


Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle














Coremiocnemis cunicularia (Simon 1892)

West, Rick C. & Nunn, Steven C. 2010

Phlogius cunicularius

Simon, E. 1892: 279

Coremiocnemis cunicularia

Simon, E. 1892: 146
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