Leiobunum rotundum

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Leiobunum rotundum
Leiobunum.rotundum.female.jpg
Female L. rotundum
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Arachnida
Order: Opiliones
Family: Sclerosomatidae
Genus: Leiobunum
Species: L. rotundum
Binomial name
Leiobunum rotundum
(Latreille, 1798)
Synonyms

Phalangium rotundum
Opilio fasciatus
Opilio hemisphaericus
Phalangium longipes
Phalangium filipes
Leiobunum rufum
Nelima fuscifrons

Leiobunum rotundum female at ground level vegetation of a hedge

Leiobunum rotundum is a species of harvestman. It is found in the western Old World.

Description[edit]

L. rotundum is chestnut-brown, with a very long round or oval body and thin black legs.[1] There is no separation between the head and the abdomen. The body is smooth and small. The harvestman's legs can be self-amputated if it is in danger of predation, but they do not regenerate. Although the harvestman has no fangs, poison glands, or silk glands, it can protect itself with the scent glands on the front of its body. The scent glands produce a secretion that repels predators.[2] The species has three different types of nephrocytes. Numerous large nephrocytes occur in clusters between the muscles in the anterior region of the body. Smaller nephrocytes are scattered throughout the body, often stuck to tracheoles. The third type of nephrocyte is attached to the heart wall by connective ligaments.[3] The morphology of the tracheae in this species is very similar to that of Nemastoma lugubre.[4]

Habitat[edit]

This harvestman is widespread throughout Britain including the Channel Islands. It can also be found on the Canary Islands and in Africa.[2] The species can be found among vegetation such as long grass, herbaceous plants, shrubs, and trees.

Diet[edit]

The harvestman eats a wide range of small invertebrates, alive or dead. Small invertebrates that it eats include caterpillars, mites, woodlice, and slugs. It drinks a lot of water, especially dew. It will sometimes suck the juice out of overripe or bruised fruit such as windfall apple. The harvestman will sometimes go to outside lights to eat insects that are attracted to the light.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Leiobunum rotundum - a harvestman - Family: Leiobunidae". Natural England. Retrieved June 6, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Harvestman (Leiobunum rotundum)". ARKive. Retrieved June 6, 2010. 
  3. ^ K. Zanger, D. R. Dannhorn, K. A. Seitz & W. Peters (1991). "Nephrocytes of harvestmen, Leiobunum limbatum and L. rotundum". Tissue and Cell 23 (1): 7–15. doi:10.1016/0040-8166(91)90062-X. PMID 18621152. 
  4. ^ A. M. Höfer, S. F. Perry & A. Schmitz (January 2000). "Respiratory system of arachnids II: morphology of the tracheal system of Leiobunum rotundum and Nemastoma lugubre (Arachnida, Opiliones)". Arthropod Structure & Development 29 (1): 13–21. doi:10.1016/S1467-8039(00)00009-8.