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Revision of the Peruvian tarantula Homoeomma peruvianum (Chamberlin, 1916): description of a new genus with eleven new species and insights to the evolution of montane tarantulas (Araneae: Theraphosidae: Theraphosinae)


The Peruvian tarantula Homoeomma peruvianum (Chamberlin, 1916) is revised. As the type specimens do not fit the diagnostic characters of Homoeomma Ausserer, 1871, especially because of the different palpal bulb morphology in males and the shape of spermathecae in females, H. peruvianum (Chamberlin, 1916) was transferred into the newly established genus Urupelma gen. n., which is herein described, diagnosed and illustrated. Eleven new species of Urupelma gen. n. (U. sanctitheresae sp. n., U. sanctimariae sp. n., U. awanqay sp. n., U. ashaninka sp. n., U. atarraz sp. n., U. megantonianum sp. n., U. machiguenga sp. n., U. pampas sp. n., U. johannae sp. n., U. veronicae sp. n., and U. dianae sp. n.) are herein described, diagnosed and illustrated. The monophyly of Urupelma gen. n. is supported by a molecular phylogenetic analysis focused on the tarantulas with urticating setae of type III and III+IV and based on three genes: the nuclear 18S and 28S, and the mitochon- drial COI gene. Apart from the support of the new genus and some existing valid genera, the molecular phylogeny also sheds light on the dynamic evolutionary history behind the adaption to high montane environments in tarantulas.
Journal of Natural History 57(41-44): 1710-1824