Cazierius ciguayo, Teruel & Jiménez & Santos, 2021

Teruel, Rolando, Jiménez, Solanlly Carrero & Santos, Gabriel de los, 2021, The first troglobitic scorpions from Hispaniola, Greater Antilles: two new species of Cazierius Francke, 1978 (Scorpiones: Diplocentridae), Euscorpius 340, pp. 1-9 : 4-6

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Cazierius ciguayo

sp. n.

Cazierius ciguayo sp. n.

( Figures 2–4 View Figure 2 View Figures 3–4 ) http://zoobank. org/urn:lsid:zoobank. org:act:48147D01-


TYPE LOCALITY AND TYPE REPOSITORY. Dominican Republic, Puerto Plata Province, Sosúa Municipality, Monumento Natural Lagunas Caberete y Goleta , Cabarete , Cueva de los Murciélagos , 19°44'16"N 70°25'10"W, 47 m a. s. l. GoogleMaps , MNHNSD.

TYPE SPECIMENS. Dominican Republic, Puerto Plata Province, Sosúa Municipality, Monumento Natural Lagunas Caberete y Goleta , Cabarete , Cueva de los Murciélagos , 19°44'16"N 70°25'10"W, 47 m a. s. l., 12 March 2021, leg. S. Carrero, J. Almonte, 1 juvenile ♂ holotype GoogleMaps ( MNHNSD 08.582 View Materials ) .

ETYMOLOGY. The selected epithet is a Latinized patronym in apposition, taken straight from the name of the native people that inhabited the general area where the type locality of this species is enclaved. The Ciguayo people were an ancient native lineage of uncertain origin (maybe Central American), who even had a language very different from Taino and all other Arawak-family languages spoken all over the insular Caribbean.

DIAGNOSIS (based on holotype juvenile male only). Habitus fully troglomorphic: entire animal depigmented (coloration translucent, immaculate pale whitish-yellow to beige), pedipalp, legs and metasoma conspicuously attenuated, carapace lacking median ocular tubercle and eyes (without any traces of lens and ocular pigment), trichobothria with shaft exaggeratedly long, thin and flexible, and telson with vesicle enlarged. Legs with modal formula of telotarsal spiniform setae 3/3: 4/4: 4/4: 4/4. Pectines with 6/6 teeth.

DESCRIPTION (juvenile male holotype, total length = 15.6 mm; Fig. 2 View Figure 2 ). Coloration. Translucent, immaculate beige to very pale whitish-yellow, only with minor dark reddish brown to blackish details (cheliceral fingertips, pedipalp finger denticles, most macrosetae and trichobothria, leg articular condyles and tips of claws and apotele, and distal half of aculeus); carapace entirely lacking ocular pigment.

Pedipalps. Longer and slenderer than standard for the family. Trichobothrial pattern C, orthobothriotaxic. Femur long and slender, about as wide as deep, straight in dorsal view and feebly curved in frontal view; dorsal surface slightly convex, internal and external surfaces essentially straight, ventral surface slightly concave; all carinae obsolete to vestigial, the dorso-exterior, dorso-interior and ventro-interior with only a few widely spaced small granules on basal third; tegument smooth and glossy, with a few small granules scattered on dorsal surface only. Patella long and slender, slightly wider than deep, straight in dorsal and frontal views; dorsal, internal, ventral and external surfaces slightly convex to essentially straight; all carinae absent to obsolete except the dorsointerior, which is weakly granulose to subcrenulate; tegument smooth and glossy, internal surface minutely and densely granulose. Chela long and slender, deeper than wide, with a medium-sized distal depression bordered by dark granules on internal surface near the base of fixed finger; manus elongate-oval and moderately compressed, distally narrower in dorsal view, moderately setose and oval in cross-section, with dorsobasal lobe round and not too prominent, all carinae obsolete to vestigial, tegument smooth and glossy; fingers very long, slender, shallowly curved and moderately setose, cutting edges with basal lobe/notch combination absent but moderately scalloped (inner and outer accessory denticles very large and raised), principal denticles arranged into six irregular but mostly straight rows, each flanked by very few outer supernumerary denticles (inner supernumerary denticles entirely absent).

Carapace. Markedly longer than wide and heptagonal. Anterior margin strongly bilobed, with four pairs of macrosetae (long, thin and dark) plus many minor setae (rigid, thin and pale), frontal lobes narrowly paraboloid; median notch widely U-shaped, deep. Tegument smooth and glossy, with many minor pale setae scattered all over, plus two pairs of long dark macrosetae (one closely set pair on dorsosubmedian position, another widely spaced on lateromedian position). Carinae absent. Furrows: anterior median, lateral oculars, central median, posterior median, posterior marginal lateral centrals and posterior laterals narrow and shallow, irregularly fused altogether. Median ocular tubercle absent, but indicated by the lateral ocular furrows; median and lateral eyes absent, entirely lacking lens and ocular pigment.

Genital operculum. Small and prominent. Halves not separated nor fused and roundly subtriangular in shape; tegument smooth and glossy. Genital papillae medium-sized, only slightly protruding and digitiform.

Pectines. Small (just reaching coxa-trochanter joint of leg IV), subrectangular and sparsely setose. Tooth count 6/6, teeth digitiform and slightly swollen, almost straight and basally separated; fulcra very small, subtriangular and little bulky. Basal plate much wider than long; anterior margin widely and shallowly notched medially, posterior margin straight; tegument smooth.

Legs. Very long and slender for the family, with all carinae absent or indistinct; tegument smooth and glossy. Telotarsi with spiniform setal formula 3/3: 4/4: 4/4: 4/4. Claws moderately long (about one-third the length of its respective telotarsus), well curved.

Mesosoma. Tergites almost bare, anterior and posterior margins almost straight; I–VI acarinate, with tegument smooth and glossy; VII with four inconspicuous carinae (submedian pair very short and composed only of 2–3 aligned granules, lateral pair long, straight and very weakly and finely granulose) and tegument minutely and densely granulose. Sternites sparsely setose (denser on VI–VII), posterior margin very shallowly concave to bilobed (III–VI) or essentially straight (VII); III–VI acarinate, with tegument smooth and glossy, spiracles small and short-oval to round; VII with traces of four inconspicuous carinae on posterior margin (submedian and lateral pairs, both very short, parallel and smooth), with tegument coriaceous.

Metasoma. Size standard for the family, but markedly slender, subcylindrical and moderately setose. All carinae vestigial to weak and subgranulose to subcrenulate, the single exception is the ventral transverse carinae, which is irregularly arcuate and composed of medium-sized conical denticles; anal arc finely and irregularly denticulate; laterodistal lobes of V inconspicuous and blunt. Intercarinal tegument smooth and glossy, with minute to small granules irregularly scattered all over, denser on V. Dorsal furrow complete, wide and shallow.

Telson. Densely covered with very long, dark and pale macrosetae all over except dorsally. Vesicle oval-slender but bulbous; tegument smooth and glossy, with minute granules irregularly scattered dorsally plus a transverse ventrobasal row of eight conical denticles and the standard four longitudinal furrows (smooth and shallow); ventral median carina absent, subaculear tubercle medium-sized, digitiform, densely setose and with few scattered small granules, mostly dorsally. Aculeus very short, slender, sharp and weakly curved.

COMPARISON. As discussed above for C. cayacoa sp. n., C. ciguayo sp. n. can be very easily distinguished from all other previously described congeners by their fully troglomorphic habitus, both sharing the complete lack of eyes and median ocular tubercle, as well as the conspicuous attenuation of the pedipalps, legs and metasoma.

Despite both species are known only by a single juvenile each, one ontogenetically invariable character is clearly diagnostic between both taxa: the modal formula of telotarsal spiniform setae, which is 3/3: 4/4: 4/4: 4/ 4 in C. ciguayo sp. n., vs. 3/3: 4/4: 5/5: 5/ 5 in C. cayacoa sp. n.

Moreover, although both specimens appear to represent different immature instars, both are males and this warrants a reliable comparison based on other secondary characters: 1) the intercarinal sculpture of tergite VII (minutely granulose in C. ciguayo sp. n., vs. smooth in C. cayacoa sp. n.); 2) the intercarinal sculpture of sternite VII (coriaceous in C. ciguayo sp. n., vs. smooth in C. cayacoa sp. n.); 3) the setation of sternites (much stronger and denser in C. cayacoa sp. n.); 4) the carination of metasoma (markedly stronger in C. ciguayo sp. n.); 5) the intercarinal sculpture of metasoma (sparsely granulose in C. ciguayo sp. n., vs. smooth in C. cayacoa sp. n.). Nevertheless, all these characters are ontogenetically variable and thus, their state in adults is expected to differ from above. Therefore, none was included in the diagnosis of each species.

Last, the caves where both scorpions were collected are widely disjunct and belong to unrelated, independent subterraneous systems. Hence, the possibility of a same troglobitic species occurring on both is unlikely.

DISTRIBUTION ( Fig. 3 View Figures 3–4 ). This species is known only from the type locality and by being a troglomorphic troglobite, it is most likely a local endemic from this cave or the subterraneous system where it belongs. It is located about 1.5 km from the seashore in a small, low, karstic limestone coastal hilly formation (= mogotes) of northern Hispaniola.

ECOLOGICAL NOTES. The type specimen was collected from a shallow scrape under a rock, which was semi-buried in the mixed clay/bat guano soil of the dark zone of the cave, 20 m deep from the entrance ( Fig. 4d View Figures 3–4 ). From its fully troglomorphic habitus and cave occurrence, it is a presumed troglobite.

Cueva de los Murciélagos is a big cave and at the far end there is a pool of crystal clear water that leads to Cueva de La Escalera. These two caves comprise the Sistema La Escalera, the third largest underwater cave in Dominican Republic, about 1 km long and 25 meters deep. They are connected together through a huge dry cave with no outside access (DRSS, 2020).

In the general karstic area outside the cave, the vegetation is mesic, broadleaf semicaducifolious forest with various degrees of human alteration ( Fig. 4c View Figures 3–4 ). During a previous diurnal search there, the first author found another diplocentrid scorpion: Cazierius sp. aff. cicero (Armas & Marcano Fondeur, 1987) . Another scorpion recorded from the same forest is the buthid Tityus sp. aff. ottenwalderi Armas, 1999, by Teruel & Santos (2018: fig. 10).


Museo Nacional de Historia Natural, Santo Domingo