The spider genus Loxosceles in North America, Central America, and the West Indies (Araneae, Loxoscelidae). Bulletin of the AMNH ; v. 175, article 3

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[New York] : American Museum of Natural History
"The present paper deals with the brown spiders the genus Loxosceles (family Loxoscelidae) as they occur over temperate and tropical North America. These haplogynes spin irregular webs, serving as retreats and snares, under ground objects of many kinds, and in houses and buildings in the human litter around them. Since all species of Loxosceles are presumed to be venomous and at least five from our area have some kind of medical record a brief review of their status in the Nearctic Region is presented. The terms Haplogynae and Entelegynae are defined and discussed in reference to their copulatory patterns. In a section on various systematic problems in Loxosceles the status of numerous specific taxa is analyzed with the conclusion that they adequately fulfill all the requirements of valid species. The systematic account of the genus Loxosceles as it occurs in continental and insular North America supplants an earlier work (Gertsch, 1958) in which the then known 18 species were described and illustrated. The presently known 54 species from this wide area are characterized as follows: two species (rufipes and panama) are related to the laeta group of South America and are endemics in Central America; two species that can be called 'cosmopolitan' have been brought into North America by trade vehicles: laeta is now established in Central America and southern California, and rufescens is now widely distributed as a house spider over much of the United States; and the remaining 50 species of the reclusa group forming the endemic fauna over much of the United States, Mexico, and adjacent countries of Central America, and on the islands of the West Indies. Descriptions, illustrations, distribution maps, and keys to the taxa are offered under various geographical subdivisions. The Loxosceles of the United States now number 11 species of which seven are described as new; six of these have limited ranges southward into Mexico. The Loxosceles of Mexico and adjacent Central America now number 38 species of which 20 are described as new: nine mostly from the southern part of Baja California, four from the Sonoran enclave, and seven from the rest of Mexico and adjacent Central America; the species bolivari Gertsch, based on the mate holotype from Cueva García in Nuevo León, is a synonym of devia Gertsch and Mulaik; only one of the Mexican species, yucatana Chamberlin and Ivie, ranges into Central America to increase its endemics of the reclusa group to three species. The Loxosceles of the West Indies now number six species of which four are described as new; two species from Jamaica show moderate cave adaptation. The name unicolor Keyserling with spurious type locality, widely and improperly used by many authors for species from both North and South America, is abandoned as dubious. The southwestern species earlier given that name was renamed deserta by Gertsch"--P. 265.
p. 264-360 : ill., maps ; 26 cm.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 356-359) and index.