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Newly-Discovered Tarantula Species Has 'Horn' on Its Back | Biology



A duo of researchers from South Africa has discovered a remarkable new species of tarantula living in central Angola.

 Ceratogyrus attonitifer. Image credit: Ian Enelbrecht.

Ceratogyrus attonitifer . Image credit: Ian Enelbrecht

The newfound species belongs to the genus Ceratogyrus (horned baboon spiders).

Named Ceratogyrus attonitifer

This spider was discovered as part of the National Geographic Okavango Wilderness Project by Dr. John Midgley from Rhodes University and KwaZulu-Natal Museum and Dr. Ian Engelbrecht of the South African National Biodiversity Institute and the University of Pretoria

" Ceratogyrus attonitifer is remarkable," the scientists said.

"No other spider in the world has a similar foveal protuberance . Its function in Ceratogyrus is uncertain. "

 Ceratogyrus attonitifer has a soft and elongated horn-like protuberance on its back. Image credit: Ian Enelbrecht

Ceratogyrus attonitifer has a soft and elongated horn-like protuberance on his back. Image credit: Ian Enelbrecht

The team collected several female specimens of Ceratogyrus attonitifer from the miombo forests of central Angola

To find them, researchers would normally spend the day locating burrows

The indigenous people in the region provided additional information on the biology and lifestyle of the spider pike

"This species is known as" 'Chandachuly' in the Luchazi language, "the scientists said.

" It preys mainly on insects. "

" The venom is not considered to be dangerous, although the bites may result in infections that can be fatal due to poor medical access. "

The discovery is reported in the journal African Invertebrates

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Midgley & amp; I. Engelbrecht. 2019. New collection records for Theraphosidae (Araneae, Mygalomorphae) in Angola, with the description of a remarkable new species of Ceratogyrus . African Invertebrates 60 (1): 1-13; doi: 10.3897 / afrinvertebr.60.32141


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