Bird spiders detectives: The solution to a 200-year-old hairy mystery

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  • March 6, 2017
  • Three species and three genera of birdeater spiders are described as new to science in a paper recently published in the open access journal ZooKeys. In their study, the Brazilian spider experts, Drs. Caroline Fukushima and Rogério Bertani, Laboratory of Ecology and Evolution, Instituto Butantan, report the diversity of the oldest tarantula genus (Avicularia), whose […]

    Family of scaffold web spiders increased with ~20% following discovery of 43 new species

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  • October 27, 2016
  • Recent study into spider specimens collected from across China, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Madagascar over the past 15 years, revealed the striking number of 43 scaffold web spiders that have stayed hidden from science until now. By describing the new species in a paper published in the open access journal ZooKeys, scientists from […]

    Species conservation profile of a critically endangered endemic for the Azores spider

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  • September 1, 2016
  • Subject to continuing population decline due to a number of factors, an exclusively cave-dwelling (troglobitic) spider endemic to the Azores is considered as Critically Endangered according to the IUCN Red List criteria. To provide a fast output, potentially benefiting the arachnid’s survival, scientists from the IUCN – Spider and Scorpion Specialist Group and the Azorean […]

    New species of spider discovered ‘next door’ at the borders of cereal fields in Spain

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  • June 30, 2016
  • The image that comes to mind when we think of new species being discovered is that of scientists sampling in remote tropical forests, where humans have barely set foot in. However, new species waiting to be discovered can in fact be very close to us, even if we live in a strongly humanized continent like […]

    A hair’s breadth away: New tarantula species and genus honors Gabriel García Márquez

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  • With its extraordinary defensive hairs, a Colombian tarantula proved itself as not only a new species, but also a new genus. It is hypothesised that the new spider is the first in its subfamily to use its stinging hairs in direct attack instead of ‘kicking’ them into the enemy. Described in the open access journal ZooKeys […]

    A new scorpion from California reveals hidden biodiversity in the Golden State

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  • April 27, 2016
  • California is known for its high biological diversity. The state encompasses a wide variety of habitats, from temperate coastal scrub and cool redwood forests to high-elevation conifer forests and grasslands that are home to an equally diverse variety of plants and animals. Biologists have been intensively studying and characterizing the biodiversity of California for centuries. […]

    New tarantula named after Johnny Cash among 14 spider species found in the United States

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  • February 8, 2016
  • A new species of tarantula named after the famous singer-songwriter Johnny Cash is one of fourteen new spiders discovered in the southwestern United States. While these charismatic spiders have captured the attention of people around the world, and have been made famous by Hollywood, little was actually known about them. The new descriptions nearly double […]

    Behemoth in Leviathan’s crypt: Second Cryptomaster daddy longlegs species

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  • January 26, 2016
  • Suggestively called Cryptomaster, the herein studied daddy longlegs genus, represented until recently by a single species, is not only difficult to find in the mountains of southwest Oregon, but had also stayed understudied for several decades since its establishment in 1969. Inspired by much newer records of the previously known species, called after the notorious […]

    Smeagol found underground in Brazil: New eyeless and highly modified harvestman species

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  • November 19, 2015
  • Called after Tolkien’s character from the “Lord of the Rings” series, a new eyeless harvestman species was found to crawl in a humid cave in southeastern Brazil. Never getting out of its subterranean home, the new daddy longlegs species is the most highly modified representative among its close relatives and only the second one with […]