Montenegro et al. (2018) reported the theraphosid spider genus Homoeomma Ausserer, 1871 from Chile and described a new species of this genus with distinctive red and black colouration, naming it Homoeomma chilensis Montenegro & Aguilera, 2018. Soon after, Sherwood et al. (2018) described Homoeomma bicolor also from Chile having the same colouration. In this work, we demonstrate these nominal species to be synonymous and H. chilensis is regarded as the valid senior synonym of H. bicolor following the Article 23 of the Code (Anonymous 1999).
This case represents an instance where two independent scientific teams described the same taxon, in different journals published within a very short period of time of each other, respectively dated October and November of the same year, causing two available binominal names to exist for a single species (Anonymous 2019). Here we resolve this situation through synonymy, discuss an additional morphological character not mentioned in the original description by Montenegro et al. (2018) and note further intraspecific variation that exists for H. chilensis. Potential homonymy in Chilean theraphosid nomenclature is also discussed.
The tarantula genus Sericopelma was originally defined based on male specimens, most notably lacking tibial spurs on leg I. Early female specimens were unrecognised as Sericopelma, and typically placed in Eurypelma – a dumping ground for problem specimens. The first females were only later recognised, but authors failed to adequately define female Sericopelma. Here, the holotypes of the Southern-most alleged Brachypelma species, B. embrithes (Chamberlin & Ivie, 1936) and B. angustum Valerio, 1980 were examined, and finding both to possess defining characteristics of Sericopelma were transferred. The taxonomic attributes to define Sericopelma relative to Brachypelma and select other Neotropical genera are discussed, especially for females. As important diagnostic characters for Sericopelma, the single (unilobar) spermathecae
swollen at the apex forming a P-shaped cross-section, metatarsus IV with trace scopula, femur IV with a dense retrolateral pad of plumose hair, plus other attributes. Some past confusion in these characters are clarified and Sericopelma relative to Brachypelma and Megaphobema mesomelas are discussed. Finally recommendations are given about these taxonomic changes for CITES regulations.