Kophosphaera excavata ( Butler, 1874 )

Wesener, Thomas, 2015, The Giant Pill-Millipedes of Nepal (Diplopoda, Sphaerotheriida, Zephroniidae) *, Zootaxa 3964 (3), pp. 301-320 : 312-313

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https://doi.org/ 10.11646/zootaxa.3964.3.1

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Kophosphaera excavata ( Butler, 1874 )


Kophosphaera excavata ( Butler, 1874)

Figures 7 View FIGURE 7 A–E

Zephronia excavata Butler, 1874: 185 (first description) Zephronia excavata :—Preudhomme de Borre 1884: 24 (list) Zephronia excavata — Pocock 1899: 466 (description) Zephronia excavata — Attems 1914: 145 (list)

Kophosphaera excavata — Attems 1936: 187 (new combination) Kophosphaera excavata — Jeekel 2001: 15 (list).

Remarks. Attems’ redescription is not identical with the original ( Jeekel 2001: 15, see below). Drawings and descriptions provided by Attems hint that he put more than one Kophosphaera species under the name K. excavata . The identity of the Nepalese specimen, and with that the occurrence of K. excavata in Nepal, remains doubtful.

Material examined. Lectotype, 1 M, NHML BM1874.51, designated herewith. Three other syntypes are apparently lost. Original label data: India, Sikkim, Ex. dry collection, Wetted by 2% Decon 90. Two extra label (blue, handwritten) (1): " Z. excavata Butler type ", (2): "Sikkim 14.51".

Comments. According to the first description collected by Mr. Whitely. Additional locality data ( Attems 1936) is dubious and might represent still undescribed Kophosphaera species: Dikrang Valley, Darrang distr., Shillong, Khasi Hills, Assam; Nepal: Chitlong (presently Chitlang, near Kathmandu). These specimens are not in the collection of the NHMW.

New diagnosis. Syncoxite of anterior telopod without any udder-like projections, distinguishing K. excavata from K. mammifera new status. Male antennae with <30 apical cones, separating this species from K. shivapuri n. sp. and K. martensi n. sp., which both carry more than 45 cones. Tarsi 1 with 4 ventral spines (only 2 or 3 in K. shivapuri n. sp. and K. martensi n. sp.). Endotergum with single sparse row of marginal setae, setae protruding up to tergite margin, while both K. shivapuri n. sp. and K. martensi n. sp. feature marginal setae that do not protrude up to the tergite margin.

Redescription (based on male lectotype). Measurements: broken, 8.8 mm (2nd) wide, 5.4 mm (2nd) high.

Colouration faded uniformly to light brown, tergites with a darker posterior margin and weak traces of green.

Head: Covered with few setae. Eyes with ca. 60 ocelli. Antennae short. Antennomeres 1–5 with few longer setae, 6 more densely pubescent. Antennomere 6 only slightly wider than preceding antennomeres. Size relations of antennomeres 1=2=3=4=5<6. Disc with 28/27 apical cones. Mouthparts not dissected. Palpi of gnathochilarium with sensory cones arranged in single field.

Collum glabrous except for few marginal setae.

Thoracic shield surface glabrous except for longer setae in grooves. Grooves shallow, without any ledges. Tergites 3–12 smooth, glabrous, paratergite tips only weakly projecting posteriorly.

Anal shield massive, strongly bell-shaped, glabrous, but covered with numerous (hair?-) pits. Underside carrying single locking carina of medium length. Carina located close to margin.

Endotergum inner section covered with medium-length setae, each inserting in an elevated area. Between ridge and inner section, single row of circular cuticular impressions. Externally, single row of marginal bristles. Bristles short, protruding towards tergite margin.

First stigma-carrying plate with a well-rounded projecting apex.

Pleurite 1 laterally elongated into a slender, well-rounded process. Pleurite 2 also weakly elongated into a broader and well-rounded process.

Leg 1 with 4, 2 with 5, 3 with 5 or 6 ventral spines. Leg pairs 4–21 with 6 or 7 ventral spines. Legs 3–21 with single apical spine, which is absent in leg pairs 1 and 2. Coxa process strongly developed and well-rounded ( Fig. 7 View FIGURE 7 A), absent from leg pair 1 and 2. Femur 1.8, tarsus 3.6 times longer than wide. Femur with short toothed ridge.

Male gonopore damaged, simple pit located centrally at the mesal margin of coxa 2, size ca. 1/4 to 1/3 of coxal height.

Anterior telopod ( Figs 7 View FIGURE 7 B, C): syncoxite damaged, laterally broken, but wider than podomere 1, glabrous. Podomere 1 only slightly larger than podomere 2 or 3, rectangular, wider than following podomeres. Podomere 2 large, posterior process not visible in anterior view, process wide, only weakly curved. Podomere 3 shorter and slenderer than podomere 2. Podomere 4 long, reaching almost the size of podomere 3, towards process of podomere 2 with two long sclerotized spines. All podomeres in anterior view sparsely covered with long setae.

Posterior telopod ( Figs 7 View FIGURE 7 D, E): typical for Kophosphaera , with four podomeres, two membranous ledges and lacking any lobes, or sclerotized teeth. Podomere 3 straight, 1.8 times longer than wide. Hollowed-out inner margin with membranous ledge. Podomere 4 well-developed, 0.75 times as long as podomere 3, with single sclerotized spine next to membranous ledge. Immovable finger wide, apically only weakly tapering, shorter than podomeres 3 and 4. Podomeres 1 and 2 in anterior view covered with setae, in posterior view podomere 1 setose, but podomere 2 only with marginal hair. Podomere 3 and 4 glabrous.

Female not part of studied type series.

Distribution. Because it is unclear if specimens attributed by later authors to K. excavata are in fact identical with the type, the current area of distribution of the species is unknown. The type specimen came from Sikkim.


Natural History Museum, Tripoli














Kophosphaera excavata ( Butler, 1874 )

Wesener, Thomas 2015

Kophosphaera excavata

Jeekel 2001: 15
Attems 1936: 187

Zephronia excavata

Attems 1914: 145
Pocock 1899: 466
Borre 1884: 24
Butler 1874: 185
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