Sphaeropoeus hercules Brandt, 1833

Wesener, Thomas, 2016, Redescription and phylogenetic analysis of the type species of the giant pill-millipede genus Sphaeropoeus Brandt, 1833 (Diplopoda, Sphaerotheriida, Zephroniidae), Zootaxa 4184 (1), pp. 141-157: 150-152

publication ID

http://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4184.1.9

publication LSID

lsid:zoobank.org:pub:F0F46020-96AB-4C67-BC0E-1E932BAC449A

persistent identifier

http://treatment.plazi.org/id/F93E87D5-D24A-FFF2-159E-332770DC912E

treatment provided by

Plazi

scientific name

Sphaeropoeus hercules Brandt, 1833
status

 

Sphaeropoeus hercules Brandt, 1833 

Figure 2View FIGURE 2 A– E

Sphaeropoeus hercules Brandt, 1833: 200  .

Sphaeropoeus banksianus Butler, 1873: 181  (synonymized under S. hercules  by Pocock, 1894: 326). Zephronia barbata Butler, 1882: 197  (synonymized under S. hercules  by Pocock 1894: 326).

Sphaeropoeus hercules  — Brandt 1833: 200 (first description).— Brandt 1841: 364 (new locality).—CL. Koch 1863: 3 (description).— Karsch 1881: 23 (description).— Daday 1889: 141 (new locality).— Pocock 1894: 326 (description).— Silvestri 1895: 722 (new locality).— Pocock 1895: 412 (key).— Sinclair 1901: 527 (new locality).— Carl 1906: 230 (description).— Attems 1914: 143 (list).— Moritz & Fischer 1974: 369 (list).—Hoffman 1980: 62 (list). – Jeekel 2001: 23 (list).— De Zoysa et al. 2016: 456 (list, erroneous record for Sri Lanka).

Zephronia hercules  — Gervais 1837: 43 (list).— Gervais 1847: 84 (list).—Preudhomme de Borre 1884: 24 (list).

Synonyms:

Sphaeropoeus banksianus  — Butler 1873: 181 (first description).— Pocock 1894: 326 (synonymized under S. hercules  ). Zephronia Banksiana  (sic!)—Preudhomme de Borre 1884: 23 (list).

Zephronia barbata  — Butler 1882: 197 (first description).—Preudhomme de Borre 1884: 23 (list).— Pocock 1894: 326 (synonymized under S. hercules  ).

Zephronia barbarta  (sic!)— Wang 1967: 484 (list).

Distribution. Type locality unknown. Other records of specimens morphologically similar to the type specimen: Indonesia: Sumatra: Padang, Manindjau, Singkarah, Paningahan, Ajer Mantjur, Palembang, Tibing Tingie, M. Singalang, Ajer Mantdor, Kaju Tanam, Si Rambe; Malaysia.

Remarks. De Zoysa et al. (2016) list S. hercules  from Sri Lanka, citing the wrong record by Pocock (1892) that was later corrected ( Pocock 1894). It remains unclear if all records of S. hercules  really deal with this species. However, illustrations and detailed descriptions provided by Pocock (1894) and Carl (1906) fit to the characters observed in the holotype. 

Type material examined. M holotype, ZMB 54. No locality information provided.

Re-diagnosis.Unfortunately, most species currently assigned to the genus Sphaeropoeus  are in need of a revision, with numerous taxonomically important characters being unknown. S. hercules  seems to differ from all congeneric species by its large size in combination with an exceptionally wide and deep groove on the thoracic shield, as well as a record number of apical cones on the antennae. Large, glabrous giant pill-millipede. Antennae apically axe-shaped, with an enormous number (>180!) of apical cones. Anterior telopod with four podomeres distal to syncoxite. Telopoditomeres 2 and 3 each almost as long as telopoditomere 1. A specially shaped lateral process of telopoditomere 2 and a process of telopoditomere 3 form a clamp.

Redescription. Measurements: male holotype broken and fragmented, probably about 48 mm long, thoracic shield 25 mm wide.

Coloration faded after> 150 years in ethanol. Tergites faded brown, antennae and remaining legs green.

Head: Eyes with>70 ocelli. Antennae short, not protruding laterally above other side of head, apparently with only 5 visible antennomeres plus disc. Antennomeres 1–4 with few longer setae, 5 pubescent. Antennomere 5 towards disc with single row of sensilla basiconica. Antennomere 5 strongly axe-shaped (apically three times wider than basally, laterally flattened), twice as wide as all other antennomeres. Disc with 180/186 apical cones, more than in any other Diplopoda.

Collum glabrous except few setae at margins.

Thoracic shield smooth and glabrous. Grooves extraordinary deep, without any ledges or ridges. Tergites 3–12 glabrous, paratergite tips of midbody tergites strongly projecting posteriorly.

Anal shield without peculiarities, well-rounded and glabrous. A single short locking carina present, located close to last pleurite.

Endotergum inner section totally lacking spines or setae ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 A). Between ridge and inner area no visible cuticular impressions. Externally three dense rows of marginal bristles ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 A). Bristles very short, not protruding up to tergite margin.

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

Legs mostly fragmented or missing. All remaining tarsi with a single apical spine and 10–12 ventral spines. Coxa process wide and well-rounded ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 B). Femur 1.8, tarsus 4.5 times longer than wide ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 B).

Male gonopore not among the remaining fragments.

Anterior telopod ( Figs 1View FIGURE 1 A, 2C): only syncoxite and telopoditomere 1 remaining ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 C). According to the literature, with four podomeres, all podomeres of equal length ( Fig. 1View FIGURE 1 A). Telopoditomere 2 with a long, curved process. Telopoditomere 3 posteriorly with a shorter process juxtaposed to apex process of telopoditomere 2 ( Fig. 1View FIGURE 1 A).

Posterior telopod ( Figs 2View FIGURE 2 D, E): Podomere 3 & 4 longer than process of podomere 2. Podomere 3 2.5 times longer than wide ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 D). Hollowed-out inner margin with a membranous ledge, posterior aspect with 9 small crenulated teeth ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 E). Immovable finger wide, straight, membranous area apically with two large membranous lobes ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 D). Podomere 1 with few setae ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 D), podomere 2 setose, posterior side of immovable finger glabrous ( Fig. 2View FIGURE 2 E). Podomere 3 anteriorly setose, posteriorly with only few marginal setae.

Kingdom

Animalia

Phylum

Arthropoda

Class

Diplopoda

Order

Sphaerotheriida

Family

Zephronidae

Genus

Sphaeropoeus

Loc

Sphaeropoeus hercules Brandt, 1833

Wesener, Thomas 2016

2016
Loc

Zephronia barbarta

Wang 1967: 484

1967
Loc

Sphaeropoeus banksianus

Pocock 1894: 326Pocock 1894: 326Butler 1882: 197Butler 1873: 181

1894
Loc

Zephronia barbata

Pocock 1894: 326
Borre 1884: 23
Butler 1882: 197

1882
Loc

Sphaeropoeus banksianus

Pocock 1894: 326
Borre 1884: 23
Butler 1873: 181

1873
Loc

Zephronia hercules

Borre 1884: 24
Gervais 1847: 84
Gervais 1837: 43

1837
Loc

Sphaeropoeus hercules

De 2016: 456
Jeekel 2001: 23
Moritz 1974: 369
Attems 1914: 143
Carl 1906: 230
Sinclair 1901: 527
Silvestri 1895: 722
Pocock 1895: 412
Pocock 1894: 326
Daday 1889: 141
Karsch 1881: 23
Koch 1863: 3
Brandt 1841: 364
Brandt 1833: 200

1833
Loc

Sphaeropoeus hercules

Brandt 1833: 200