New species of mite harvestmen from southeast Queensland, Australia greatly extend the known distribution of the genus Austropurcellia (Arachnida, Opiliones, Cyphophthalmi)

Zootaxa. 2014 Jul 7;3827(4):517-41. doi: 10.11646/zootaxa.3827.4.5.


Austropurcellia Juberthie 1988 is a genus of mite harvestmen previously known from numerous localities in the Wet Tropics of northern Queensland and from one locality in central Queensland, Australia. As a result of the current study, the genus is now also known from localities in far southeast Queensland. We describe three new species of Austropurcellia from museum lots: A. acuta sp. nov., A. barbata sp. nov., and A. superbensis sp. nov. Each new species is known from only one to two localities, and from very few specimens. In addition, we describe a pair of previously overlooked dorsal anterior cuticular structures that may be sensory in nature and are found in all Austropurcellia specimens examined, including both new and previously described species. We present a new distribution map of Austropurcellia, greatly expanding its known range to almost the entire east coast of Queensland, and discuss the biogeography of the genus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animal Distribution
  • Animal Structures / anatomy & histology
  • Animal Structures / growth & development
  • Animals
  • Body Size
  • Ecosystem
  • Female
  • Male
  • Mites / anatomy & histology
  • Mites / classification*
  • Mites / growth & development
  • Organ Size