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The spider genus Artema

Aharon S, Huber BA, Gavish-Regev E
Vollständiger Titel: 
Daddy-long-leg giants: revision of the spider genus Artema Walckenaer, 1837 (Araneae, Pholcidae).
ZFMK-Autorinnen / ZFMK-Autoren: 
Org. Einordnung: 
Publiziert in: 
European Journal of Taxonomy
DOI Name: 
Pholcidae, Middle East, taxonomy, key
Bibliographische Angaben: 
Aharon S, Huber BA, Gavish-Regev E. 2017. Daddy-long-leg giants: revision of the spider genus Artema Walckenaer, 1837 (Araneae, Pholcidae). European J Taxonomy 376: 1-57. http://doi.org/10.5852/ejt.2017.376

This paper is the first revision of Artema Walckenaer, 1837, a genus consisting of large and phylogenetically interesting species. Even though Artema is not species-rich (now eight nominal species), it has suffered from poor descriptions, synonymies, and confusing data. Our main goal was to gather all available material from collections worldwide and to clarify species limits. Four species are easily distinguished from other congeners: Artema atlanta Walckenaer, 1837, the widespread type species; A. kochi Kulczyński, 1901 (revalidated) from Northeast Africa; A. bunkpurugu Huber & Kwapong, 2013 from West Africa; and A. nephilit sp. nov. from the East Mediterranean and the Arabian Peninsula. All other species are considered problematic for varying reasons: species limits are unclear between Artema doriae Thorell, 1881 and A. transcaspica Spassky, 1934 from Central Asia and surrounding regions; Roewer’s Afghan species A. magna Roewer, 1960 and A. ziaretana (Roewer, 1960) are problematic because they are based on female and juvenile types respectively and little new material is available from Afghanistan. The material available to us suggests the existence of a few further species; however, they are not formally described, either because of small sample sizes (the two morpho-species Artema sp. a and A. sp. b are represented by only one specimen each, female and male respectively) or because of unclear species limits (Artema sp. c is similar to the problematic A. transcaspica and A. doriae).This study is the first serious step towards understanding the genus, but further intensive collecting effort is needed in order to fully clarify species limits.