Speleoperipatus

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Speleoperipatus
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Onychophora
Class: Udeonychophora
Order: Euonychophora
Family: Peripatidae
Genus: Speleoperipatus
Peck, 1975
Species:
S. spelaeus
Binomial name
Speleoperipatus spelaeus
Peck, 1975

Speleoperipatus is a monospecific genus of velvet worm in the Peripatidae family, containing the single species Speleoperipatus spelaeus.[2] This species is a pale greenish yellow, almost white, with 22 or 23 pairs of legs and no eyes.[3]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

Speleoperipatus spelaeus is a troglobiont known only from two cave systems in northern St. Catherine, Jamaica; Pedro Cave and Swansea Cave.[4]

One other troglobitic velvet worm species is known; Peripatopsis alba, from Wynberg Cave and Bats Cave, on Table Mountain, South Africa.

Conservation[edit]

Only seven individuals have been found as of 2021; four specimens collected by Dr S. Peck in 1975 at Pedro Cave, one individual found (not collected, but confirmed photographically by Peck) at Swansea Cave by members of the Jamaican Cave Organisation (JCO) in 2010, and two more found again at Swansea Cave by the JCO in November, 2021.[4] The species is listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ New, T.R. (1996). "Speleoperipatus spelaeus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 1996: e.T20460A9202417. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.1996.RLTS.T20460A9202417.en. Retrieved 16 November 2021.
  2. ^ Oliveira, I.; Hering, L. & Mayer, G. "Updated Onychophora checklist". Onychophora Website. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  3. ^ Peck, Stewart B. (1975). "A review of the New World Onychophora with the description of a new cavernicolous genus and species from Jamaica" (PDF). Psyche. 82: 341–358.
  4. ^ a b R. S. Stewart (February 13, 2010). "Swansea Cave". Jamaican Caving Notes. Jamaican Caves Organisation. Retrieved 21 May 2014.
  5. ^ New, T. R. (1996). "Speleoperipatus spelaeus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 1996: e.T20460A9202417. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.1996.RLTS.T20460A9202417.en.