New Spider from the Upper Triassic of Italy

Regardless of the higher taxonomic uncertainty, the Triassic record for spiders is poor and just got a little bit better.

Dalla Vecchia, F. M., and P. A. Selden. 2013. A Triassic spider from Italy. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica forthcoming paper.

Abstract - A new fossil spider from the Triassic (Norian) Dolomia di Forni Formation of Friuli, Italy, is described as Friularachne rigoi gen. et sp. nov. This find brings the number of known Triassic spider species to four. The specimen is an adult male, and consideration of various features, including enlarged, porrect chelicerae, subequal leg length, and presence of a dorsal scutum, point to its identity as a possible member of the mygalomorph superfamily Atypoidea. If correct, this would extend the geological record of the superfamily some 98–115 Ma from the late Early Cretaceous (?Albian, c. 100–112 Ma) to the late middle–early late Norian (c. 210–215Ma).

 Left: Drawing of the fossil of Friularachne rigoi (from Dalla Vecchia & Selden, 2013). Right: Reconstruction of Friularachne rigoi; Credits Lukas Panzarin.

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