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Bonn, Germany

Wongthamwanich N.,Chulalongkorn University | Panha S.,Chulalongkorn University | Sierwald P.,Field Museum of Natural History | Wesener T.,Forschungsmuseum Koenig | Thirakhupt K.,Chulalongkorn University
Zootaxa | Year: 2012

As a first step towards an inventory of the giant pill-millipedes in Thailand, a new species of the genus Sphaerobelum Verhoeff, 1924, S. truncatum n. sp. is described from Nan Province, northern Thailand. A determination key is presented for all five known Sphaerobelum species. Clear morphological differences between S. truncatum n. sp. and the other four Sphaerobelum species were found on the anterior telopods. For the first time in Sphaerobelum, the partial mitochondrial COI gene was sequenced for S. truncatum n. sp. and compared with distance, maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood methods to those of species from other giant pill-millipede genera. Sphaerobelum truncatum n. sp. was found to differ from all other analyzed giant pill-millipedes, including species of Zephronia Gray, 1832, by 22-30%, including numerous amino acid changes, supporting the separate status of Sphaerobelum among other giant pill-millipede genera. Maximum likelihood and parsimony analyses support the placement of Sphaerobelum in the Zephroniidae. Figures of all relevant structures of Sphaerobelum truncatum n. sp. are provided to allow the use of these characters in future descriptions of species of the family Zephroniidae. Copyright © 2012 Magnolia Press. Source

A new genus and species of the pill millipede order Glomerida, Nearctomeris inexpectata n. sp., n. gen., is described from the Eastern United States. The description of Nearctomeris brings the total number of American Glomerida genera to three. In two of three known localitites, Nearctomeris co-occurs with species of the genus Onomeris Cook, 1896. Onomeris and Nearctomeris have almost an identical size (4-5.5 mm) and dark colour, but can be readily distinguished by numerous non-sexual and sexual characters. Sexual characters of the male telopod also place Nearctomeris into the family Glomeridae, while the third American pill millipede genus Glomeroides Chamberlin, 1922 belongs to the Protoglomeridae. A key to all American genera of Glomerida is presented. For the first time in the order Glomerida, the partial cytochrome c oxidase I mitochondrial gene was analyzed for the three American genera of the Glomerida, Glomeroides, Onomeris, and Nearctomeris together with European genera currently placed in different families, Glomeridella and Trachysphaera, as outgroups. Distance, maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood methods were employed. Maximum parsimony and likelihood analyses did not lead to a well-resolved phylogeny, but found a weakly supported sister-group relationship between Nearctomeris and Onomeris. All five analyzed pill millipede genera differ greatly in their uncorrected basepairs (15-22%), and moderately in their amino acids (5-10%). As in Onomeris, the closest relative of Nearctomeris can probably be found among the Asian genera Hyleoglomeris Verhoeff, 1910 or Hyperglomeris Silvestri, 1917. In America, more attention should be given to the search for other small-bodied, cryptic, rare Glomerida. Copyright © 2012 Magnolia Press. Source

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