Tapinopterus (Tapinopterus) macedonicus, Ćurčić & Waitzbauer & Zolda & Ćurčić & Mihajlova, 2008

Ćurčić, Srećko B., Waitzbauer, Wolfgang, Zolda, Pamela, Ćurčić, Božidar P. M. & Mihajlova, Branislava, 2008, A new endemic ground beetle species of the genus Tapinopterus Schaum (Pterostichini: Carabidae: Coleoptera) from the Balkan Peninsula, with some notes on its ecology, Journal of Natural History 42 (31 - 32), pp. 2117-2125 : 2119-2124

publication ID

https://doi.org/ 10.1080/00222930802141838

persistent identifier


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scientific name

Tapinopterus (Tapinopterus) macedonicus

sp. nov.

Tapinopterus (Tapinopterus) macedonicus sp. nov.

( Figure 1 View Figure 1 )

Type material

Holotype „: Republic of Macedonia, Skopje , Mount Karadžica, 1300 m above sea level, v. Patiška Reka, the Špela Bozguni Cave, 20 June 2002, leg. S. Ćurčić; one paratype ♀, same locality as of the holotype, 14 July 2000, leg. E. Stojkoska.


Length: holotype male 12.00 mm; paratype female 10.85 mm. Width of elytra: holotype male 3.92 mm; paratype female 3.58 mm. Body elongated and sub-parallel-sided ( Figure 1A View Figure 1 ). Body surface shiny. Dorsal side more or less reddish-brown to brown, only last antennomeres, femora, and palpi somewhat lighter; ventral side not lighter than dorsal side. Microsculpture on elytra fine, isodiametric (visible above×25). Head smooth dorsally, with barely visible punctuation, as long as broad (width: length ratio 1.01), broader than long in „ (width: length ratio 1.08), longer than broad in ♀ (width: length ratio 0.95); narrower (the head: pronotum width ratio 0.73) and shorter (the head: pronotum length ratio 0.80) than pronotum ( Figure 1A View Figure 1 ); both labrum and clypeus concave medially; genae, subgenae, and tempora protruding; frontal furrows deeply incised, slightly divergent towards the eyes and reaching level of the first supraorbital pore; suborbital fold massive, protruding above antennal depression. Eyes very small and not prominent, about 2.22–2.40 times shorter than tempora. Antennae thin, long 5.31 mm in holotype male and 4.42 mm in paratype female, pubescent from antennomere IV; antennomere III 2.02 times longer than broad; the antennomere I: II+III length ratio 0.65; the antennomere II: III length ratio 0.65; the antennae: body length ratio 0.43. Antennomeres V–XI flattened. Apical antennomeres lighter than the basal ones. Mandibles moderately elongated and basally broad, apically roundly pointed; last palpomeres of both maxillary and labial palpi spindleshaped; mentum with a small bifid tooth.

Pronotum heart-shaped ( Figure 1A View Figure 1 ), narrower posteriorly than anteriorly (its anterior margin: base length ratio 1.36), clearly wider than long (the width: length pronotum ratio 1.11), broadest somewhat after its fore third; its lateral margins well rounded anteriorly and weakly sinuated before the posterior angles, which are obtuse and rounded; anterior angles sharp, rounded and protruding forward; both anterior and posterior margins concave medially; disk slightly convex; median furrow well impressed, not reaching anterior or posterior margin. Basal surface flat, with a transverse sub-basal furrow, but with well-marked single basal impression on each side; lateral margins both fine and narrow, slightly narrowing posteriorly. Prosternal process both angulosely rounded and margined, with median convexity; proepisternum smooth.

Elytra sub-parallel (male) to somewhat oval (female) ( Figure 1A View Figure 1 ), almost twice as narrow as long (the elytra width: length ratio 0.56), having the greatest width somewhat below their half-way point, slightly wider than pronotum (elytra: pronotum width ratio 1.15), sides arcuated; humeri weakly marked, forming obtuse angles, and almost rounded; basal margin bordered, distinctly broader than base of pronotum (the elytra: pronotum base length ratio 1.26), intervals IV–VI with clear concavity; all intervals both smooth and with fine punctuation, those on disk weakly convex, while those at sides markedly convex, interval IX at apex wrinkled; scutellar striae present; elytral striae deep, very finely punctuated, not interrupted; disk convex apically. Mesepisterna strongly punctuated; metepisterna wider than long, smooth. Abdomen with smooth sternites. Final male sternite with deep subdistal transverse furrow, but apically flattened. Fore femora well widened. Metatrochanters half as long as the metafemora. Tarsi glabrous above; first metatarsomere with a developed exterior suture.

Chaetotaxy: 3+3 pores on anterior margin of labrum; 1+1 marginal pores on clypeus; 2+2 supraorbital pores; 1+1 lateral pores on pronotum in its fore fourth; 1+1 scutellar setiferous pores; 1+1 dorsal setiferous pores on the second elytral striae, which are located slightly before the posterior fourth of elytra; humeral series of the elytra: six pores; one small apical pore on intersect of second and seventh striae; 1+1 marginal pores on last abdominal sternite in males, 2+ 2 in females; onychium with two pairs of fine setae underneath, located on its posterior half.

Male abdominal sternite IX (urite) well-developed, ovoid-shaped ( Figure 1B View Figure 1 ). Male genitalia ( Figures 1C, D View Figure 1 ): penis in lateral view curved to apex, forming obtuse angle; internal sac with differentiated lamella (endophallus); the right paramere round, ear-shaped, the left one narrow, regularly curved, and sickle-shaped; penis somewhat widened medially, but distally narrowing, with rounded apex carrying small tooth on left side (in dorsal view).

Female genitalia ( Figure 1E View Figure 1 ): gonocoxites IX long and thick, somewhat curved, distally moderately narrowing, apically rounded, basally joined with elongated gonosubcoxites IX.


The newly described species is compared with the morphologically similar species Tapinopterus (T.) comita Jedlička, 1935 , T. (T.) dochii Apfelbeck, 1906 , T. (T.) miridita Apfelbeck, 1904 , and T. (T.) rambousekianus Mařan, 1933 ( Apfelbeck 1904, 1906; Mařan 1933; Jedlička 1935; Schatzmayr 1942, 1943) ( Table 2). All cited species inhabit the Balkan Peninsula, they are of moderate size (10–13 mm), and possess each specific structure of prosternal process, final male sternite, apex of aedeagus and parameres.

The new species differs from all mentioned phenetically close congeners with respect to the following set of morphological characters: body size, form, and color, shape of the pronotum, pronotal length: width ratio, shape of the lateral pronotal margins, shape of the posterior part of the pronotal margin, shape of the hind pronotal angles, depth of the pronotal basal impressions, presence/absence of a margin of the prosternal process, shape of the elytra, form of the elytra in males, shape of the elytra basally, degree of the convexity of the elytral disk, depression of the elytral striae, convexity of the elytral intervals, presence/absence of a transverse furrow on the ultimate male sternite, presence/absence of a transverse step-shaped keel on the ultimate male sternite, depth of the anal sternite depression in males, shape of the penis, form of the apical part of the aedeagus, form of the basal bulb, and shape of the paramerae.

Bionomics and distribution

Individuals of the new species were collected from under stones and from humus and soil in the anterior part of the cave investigated. Tapinopterus (T.) macedonicus sp. nov. is known only from the Špela Bozguni Cave on Mount Karadžica, Republic of Macedonia, and represents an endemic form inhabiting Northern Macedonia only.

The semi-blind or completely blind representatives of the genus Speluncarius Reitter live in deep soil, while the Tapinopterus species have eyes and inhabit the superficial stratum or Mesovoid Shallow Substratum. According to Coiffait (1958), the former are endogean beetles, in contrast to Tapinopterus spp., which are epigean. Present opinion ( Sciaky 1982) holds that Speluncarius (s. l.) spp. are closely related and derived forms of Tapinopterus (s. str.) leading a more specialized mode of life than the latter. The finding of a few forms in transition from an epigean to an endogean way of life with reduced eyes (mostly living in caves) supports this assumption ( Mařan 1945; Guéorguiev and Guéorguiev 1998). The new species is in a more advanced stage of transition from an epigean to an endogean way of life than its closest relatives.


The new species is named after the Republic of Macedonia, its terra typica. The name of the new species is of male gender.