The Malagasy goblin spiders of the new genus Molotra (Araneae, Oonopidae). (American Museum novitates, no. 3729)
American Museum of Natural History.
A new oonopid genus endemic to Madagascar, Molotra, is proposed and its six included species are newly described and illustrated: M. molotra, the type species, M. ninae, M. katarinae, M. suzannae, M. tsingy, and M. milloti. Molotra is defined on the basis of its unusual genitalia. The male has the palpal bulb terminating in broad, liplike lobes, unlike any previously described in Oonopidae. The female is equally unusual in lacking an apparent receptaculum, although the genitalia otherwise resemble those of silhouettelloid genera. The species of Molotra form three distinct groups based on somatic and genitalic characters. The M. molotra group includes four large, strongly spined species. The remaining two are morphologically distinct and known only from males. M. tsingy is a small species with unusual palpi that are complex, contorted, and with a resting position along the sternocoxal boundary, instead of an anterior sternal cavity. M. milloti is a very bristly species that differs somatically from other Molotra but has genitalia similar to the M. molotra group. Molotra is known only from Madagascar where the three species groups are strongly disjunct. The M. molotra group occurs in higher elevation forests (1000-1300 m) in northeastern Madagascar, M. tsingy is from low elevation karst (150 m) of the southwest, whereas M. milloti is from a coastal locality in the northwest.
69 p. : ill. (some col.), col. map ; 26 cm.
Molotra., Oonopidae., Spiders., Madagascar.