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New species and a new genus of earthworms in the collections of the Queensland Museum


, : New species and a new genus of earthworms in the collections of the Queensland Museum. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 38(2): 575-596

The present study adds to the endemic earthworm fauna of Australia (Megascolecidae), one species of the subfamily Acanthodrilinae (Rhododrilus glandifera sp. nov.) and nine species of the subfamily Megascolecinae, in the tribes Perionychini (Heteroporodrilus montiserratae, Terrisswalkerius windsori, Cryptodrilus bunyaensis spp. nov.); Dichogastrini (Digaster lingi, D. moretonensis spp. nov.); and Megascolecini (Oreoscolex retrocystis sp. nov., Propheretima eungella gen. et sp. nov., Propheretima hugalli sp. nov., and Spenceriella conondalei sp. nov.). Rhododrilus glandifera is the second species of this primarily New Zealand genus to be described from Australia (both from Queensland). It is possible that it has acquired the microscolecin arrangement of male pores (prostates one pair discharging with the vasa deferentia in XVII) from a precursor with the acanthodrilin arrangement (prostate pores 2 pairs, in XVII and XIX; male pores in XVIII) independently of the New Zealand species. Type localities of Heteroporodrilus montiserratae, Terrisswalkerius windsori, Digaster lingi, D. moretonensis, Oreoscolex retrocystis and Spenceriella conondalei are well within the ranges of their respective genera. However, the insular locality of D. moretonensis, on Moreton Island, is of zoogeographic interest and Cryptodrilus bunyaensis represents a northern extension for its genus. The new genus Propheretima, has been erected for species which resemble the Oriental and Australo-Papuan Pheretima assemblage of genera in having setae between the male pores but which are plesiomorphic in retaining the gizzard in segment V, not in the apomorphic location of VIII seen in all pheretimas. It endorses the view that the ancestry of the Pheretima assemblage was Australian.

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