Epicadinus polyophthalmus ( Mello-Leitão, 1929 ),

Prado, André Wanderley Do, Baptista, Renner Luiz Cerqueira & Machado, Miguel, 2018, Taxonomic review of Epicadinus Simon, 1895 (Araneae: Thomisidae), Zootaxa 4459 (2), pp. 201-234: 230

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Epicadinus polyophthalmus ( Mello-Leitão, 1929 )

new combination

Epicadinus polyophthalmus ( Mello-Leitão, 1929)  new combination

Epicadinus polyophthalmus Mello-Leitão, 1929: 102  , fig. 46.

Type material. Holotype: juvenile, BRASIL, Rio de Janeiro: Niterói ( MNRJ, Col. Mello-Leitão 901), lost. 

E. polyophthalmus  is based on a female holotype from Niterói (state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). The type material should be deposited in MNRJ, but is considered lost ( Silva-Moreira 2010). It was not found in that collection, not even with new searches done by the authors. In the original description, Mello-Leitão highlights the following characters: small size (4 mm), very spiny tegument, tubercles between the lateral eyes, elevated crest in the carapace, and the color pattern, with black spots near the abdominal conical projections. The specimen illustration ( Mello-Leitão 1929: fig. 46) highlights other important features, such as the broad opisthosoma, with a short and thin posterior conical projection, not exceeding the posterior margin of the opisthosoma, and the presence of long macrosetae only in the ventral portion of the legs. These features allowed us to recognize that the holotype of E. polyophthalmus  was actually a young specimen, not an adult female. As in Epicadinus  , Epicadus  specimens have ocular tubercles separating the lateral eyes and a spiny tegument. However, they may be recognized by the presence of a spiny or high spiniform crest on the back of the carapace, and by the absence of robust setiferous tubercles, surmounted by long macrosetae, covering the tegument. It is important to consider that juveniles of Epicadus  may not present the median crest of the carapace as high and prominent as the very conspicuous spiniform projections of the adults, and exhibit great variation of size and shape of the abdominal tubercles and color pattern. In juveniles, the paired tubercles may be very small and almost inconspicuous (R. Baptista pers. obs.). Mello-Leitão (1929) mentioned the presence of two pairs of very weak, ventral paired "spines" (macrosetae) in the tarsi, but this characteristic is probably an erroneous interpretation of spininiform bristles a little more robust, since the genera of Stephanopinae  do not have paired macrosetae on the tarsi. Among the valid species of Epicadus  , the illustration and description of Epicadinus polyophthalmus  indicates that it may be a synonym of some species found in or near Rio de Janeiro state: Epicadus rubripes Mello-Leitão, 1924  , Epicadus taczanowskii ( Roewer, 1951)  or Epicadus trituberculatus ( Taczanowski, 1872)  . Epicadus rubripes  and Epicadus trituberculatus  are common in Rio de Janeiro and have been recorded from Niterói ( Silva-Moreira & Machado 2016), and Epicadus taczanowskii  has been recorded from the nearby states of Espírito Santo and São Paulo ( Machado et al. 2018). So, Epicadinus polyophthalmus  clearly belongs to Epicadus  , and should be refered as Epicadus polyophthalmus ( Mello-Leitão, 1929)  comb. nov. Some characteristics mentioned in the description indicate that Epicadus polyophthalmus  may be a synonym of Epicadus taczanowskii  , such as the very spiny tegument (mainly in the carapace), all three abdominal conical projections with thin tips, and the posterior conical projection not too high. However, as the immature holotype of Epicadus polyophthalmus  is lost, we prefer to consider it as a nomen dubium.


Museu Nacional/Universidade Federal de Rio de Janeiro














Epicadinus polyophthalmus ( Mello-Leitão, 1929 )

Prado, André Wanderley Do, Baptista, Renner Luiz Cerqueira & Machado, Miguel 2018

Epicadinus polyophthalmus Mello-Leitão, 1929 : 102

Mello-Leitão, 1929 : 102