Tasmanicosa stella, Framenau, Volker W. & Baehr, Barbara C., 2016

Framenau, Volker W. & Baehr, Barbara C., 2016, Revision of the Australian Union-Jack wolf spiders, genus Tasmanicosa (Araneae, Lycosidae, Lycosinae), Zootaxa 4213 (1), pp. 1-82: 46-48

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Tasmanicosa stella

sp. nov.

Tasmanicosa stella   sp. nov.

Star wolf spider

( Figs 3F View FIGURE 3 , 25 View FIGURE 25 , 26A–K View FIGURE 26 )

Type data. Holotype. Male , Mt Keith, 18.7 km E of Mt Keith homestead [27°14'55”S, 120°41'48”E, Western Australia, AUSTRALIA], 24 September–1 October 2005, pitfall trap, R. Teale (Biota), MK015A ( WAM T93536 View Materials ). Paratype GoogleMaps   . Female , Mt Keith, 22.5 km SE of Lake Way Homestead [27°15'04”S, 120°45'21”E, Western Australia, AUSTRALIA], 1 October 2005, R. Teale, Biota MKO12B pitfall trap ( WAM T85307 View Materials ). GoogleMaps  

Other material examined. 88 males, 11 females and two juveniles in 78 records (Appendix B).

Etymology. The specific epithet is a noun in apposition ( stella, Latin   – star) and refers to the light, basally starshaped pattern on the carapace, which is unique within the genus.

Diagnosis. Male pedipalp and female epigyne morphology are most similar to that of T. kochorum   , but T. stella   can easily be distinguished from that species and all other Tasmanicosa   by the light, basally star-shaped pattern on the carapace ( Figs 26A–B View FIGURE 26 ).

Description. Male (based on holotype, WAM T93536 View Materials ).

Total length 14.5.

Prosoma. Length 8.0, width 5.6; carapace brown; with indistinct Union-Jack pattern but species-specific light median pattern resembling a star posteriorly and with a widening fork anteriorly and indistinct marginal bands ( Fig 26A View FIGURE 26 ); sternum brown with darker setae ( Fig. 26C View FIGURE 26 ).

Eyes. Diameter of AME 0.41, ALE 0.34, PME 0.72, PLE 0.60.

Chelicerae. Dark brown with an elongated patch of golden setae frontally.

Labium. Dark brown, with lighter anterior rim ( Fig. 26C View FIGURE 26 ).

Endites. Brown, with apico-medially lighter rim ( Fig. 26C View FIGURE 26 ).

Legs. Uniformly brown, femora somewhat darker and slightly mottled.

Opisthosoma. Length 6.6, width 4.3; dorsally dark olive-brown with irregular light patches formed by white pubescence ( Fig. 26A View FIGURE 26 ); venter dark brown to black and covered with black setae ( Fig. 26C View FIGURE 26 ).

Pedipalps. Cymbium dorsally with dense layer of silvery setae, tip with ca. 6 macrosetae ( Figs 26E–F View FIGURE 26 ); ridge of tegular apophysis very slightly curved and slightly shorter than tegular apophysis width ( Figs 26I –J View FIGURE 26 ); embolus sickle-shaped tapering gently towards tip; terminal apophysis sickle-shaped, almost straight ( Fig. 26K View FIGURE 26 ).

Female (based on paratype, WAM T85307).

Total length 15.6.

Prosoma. Length 8.2, width 5.6; carapace and sternum colouration as male (26B, D).

Eyes. Diameter of AME 0.35, ALE 0.26, PME 0.86, PLE 0.66.

Chelicerae, labium, endites, legs and opisthosoma. Opisthosoma length 7.1, width 5.3, otherwise as male, but opisthosoma with banded pattern in posterior half and venter of coxae somewhat lighter ( Figs 26B, D View FIGURE 26 ).

Epigyne. Slightly longer than wide; median septum inverted T-shaped and slightly bulging anteriorly ( Fig. View FIGURE 26

26G); spermathecal heads longer than wide and only slightly wider than spermathecal stalks; spermathecal stalks convoluted basally ( Figs 26H View FIGURE 26 ).

Life history and habitat preferences. Tasmanicosa stella   has been found in a variety of open, semi-arid bush and grasslands, such as Belah chenopod bushland, mallee with Leptospermum   spp. understorey and mallee/spinifex ( Triodia   sp.) scrubland. Mature males of T. stella   have been found from September to December, with one isolated occurrence in March. Similarly, mature females peaked from October to December, but three records were from March, June and July, respectively.

Distribution. Tasmanicosa stella   has the centre of its distribution in South Australia, but can also be found in New South Wales and Victoria to the east and Western Australia to the west ( Fig. 25 View FIGURE 25 ).


Western Australian Museum