A new species of Hortipes (Araneae, Corinnidae), the first spider with an insertable retrolateral tibial apophysis on the male palp

  • Rudy Jocqué Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren, Belgium
  • Jan Bosselaers Royal Museum for Central Africa B 3080 Tervuren Belgium
  • Arnaud Henrard Royal Museum for Central Africa B 3080 Tervuren Belgium
Keywords: genitalia, morphology, Corinnidae, Guinea, Mt Nimba


Hortipes gigapophysalis (Araneae, Corinnidae) is a new species described from both sexes from montane forest on Mt Nimba, eastern Guinea. The species is remarkable for its long, whip-shaped retrolateral tibial apophysis (RTA) on the male palp. The structure apparently has an insertable function as the epigyne of the female contains a separate set of ducts starting from a central concavity that is unique in the genus. This duct system is apparently meant to receive the supple RTA. This type of structural arrangement has never previously been found in spiders.

Author Biography

Rudy Jocqué, Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren, Belgium

Department of Zoology

Former head of invertebrate section


Bonaldo A.B. 1997. On the neotropical genus Ianduba (Araneae, Corinnidae). Iheringia, Serie Zoologia 83: 165-180.

Bosselaers J. & Jocqué R. 2000a. Hortipes, a huge genus of tiny African spiders (Araneae, Liocranidae). Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 256: 1-108. http://dx.doi.org/10.1206/0003-0090(2000)256%3C0004:HAHGOT%3E2.0.CO;2

Bosselaers J. & Jocqué R. 2000b. Studies in Corinnidae: transfer of four genera and description of the female of Lessertina mutica Lawrence 1942. Tropical Zoology 13: 305-325.

Bosselaers J. & Ledoux J.-C. 1998. Description of a new African genus, Hortipes (Araneae, Liocranidae). Revue d’Arachnologie 12 (14): 147–152.

Bremer K. 1988. The limits of amino acid sequence data in angiosperm phylogenetic reconstruction. Evolution 42: 795–803.

Bremer K. 1994. Branch support and tree stability. Cladistics 10: 295–304.

Bugnion E., Devine S. & Rosenblum M. 2000. Virtual machine monitors for scalable multiprocessors. US patent 6,075,938, 15 pp.

Coddington J.A. & Levi H.W. 1991. Systematics and Evolution of Spiders (Araneae). Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 22: 565-592. http://dx.doi.org/10.1146/annurev.es.22.110191.003025

Eberhard W.G. & Huber B.A. 1998. Possible links between embryology, lack of innervation, and the evolution of male genitalia in spiders. Bulletin of the British arachnological Society 11 (2): 73-80.

Gering R. L. 1953. Sructure and function of the genitalia in some American agelenid spiders. Smithsonian miscellaneous Collections 121 (4): 1-84.

Goloboff P.A. 1993. Estimating character weights during tree search. Cladistics 9: 83–91.

Goloboff P.A., Farris J.S. and Nixon K.C. 2003. TNT, Tree Analysis using New Technology. Version 1.1, sponsored by the Willy Hennig Society. Available from: http://www.cladistics.com (2008-12-30).

Goloboff P.A., Farris J.S. & Nixon K.C. 2008. TNT, a free program for phylogenetic analysis. Cladistics 24: 774–786.

Huber B.A. 1994. Copulatory mechanics in the funnel-web spiders Histopona torpida and Textrix denticulata (Agelenidae, Araneae). Acta Zoologica 75 (4): 379-384.

Huber B.A. 1995a. The retrolateral tibial apophysis in spiders - shaped by sexual selection? Zoological Journal of the Linnean society 113: 151-163.

Huber B.A. 1995b. Genital morphology and copulatory mechanics in Anyphaena accentuata (Anyphaenidae) and Clubiona pallidula (Clubionidae: Araneae). Journal of Zoology, London 235: 689-702.

Jäger P. 2006. Lengthening of embolus and copulatory duct: a review of an evolutionary trend in the spider family Sparassidae (Arachnida: Araneae). In: Deltshev C. & Stoev P. (eds) European Arachnology 2005. Acta Zoologica Bulgarica Suppl. No 1: 49–62.

Jäger P. 2012. Revision of the genus Sinopoda Jäger, 1999 in Laos with discovery of the first eyeless huntsman spider species (Sparassidae: Heteropodinae). Zootaxa 3415: 37-57.

Jocqué R. 2002. Genitalic polymorphism - a challenge for taxonomy. Journal of Arachnology 30: 298-306. http://dx.doi.org/10.1636/0161-8202(2002)030[0298:GPACFT]2.0.CO;2

Jocqué R. & Bosselaers J. 2011. Revision of Pseudocorinna Simon and a new related genus (Araneae: Corinnidae): two more examples of spider templates with a large range of complexity in the genitalia. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 162: 271-350. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1096-3642.2010.00679.x

Ledoux J.-C. & Emerit M. 1998. Quelques espèces du genre africain Hortipes Bosselaers & Ledoux et leur coupelle métatarsale (Araneae, Liocranidae?). Revue arachnologique 12: 153-168.

Osterloh A. 1922. Beiträge zur Kenntnis des Kopulationsapparates einiger Spinnen. Zeitschrift für wissenschaftliche Zoologie 119: 326-421.

Platnick N.I. & Shadab M.U. 1975. A revision of the spider genus Gnaphosa (Araneae, Gnaphosidae) in America. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 155: 1-66.

Senglet A. 2004. Copulatory mechanisms in Zelotes, Drassyllus and Trachyzelotes (Araneae, Gnaphosidae), with additional faunistic and taxonomic data on species from southwest Europe. Mitteilungen der Schweizerischen Entomologischen Gesellschaft 77: 87-119.

Sierwald P. & Coddington J.A. 1988. Functional aspects of the male palpal organ in Dolomedes tenebrosus, with notes on the mating behavior (Araneae, Pisauridae). Journal of Arachnology 16: 262-265.

How to Cite
Jocqué, R., Bosselaers, J., & Henrard, A. (2012). A new species of Hortipes (Araneae, Corinnidae), the first spider with an insertable retrolateral tibial apophysis on the male palp. European Journal of Taxonomy, (26). https://doi.org/10.5852/ejt.2012.26