Biodiversity Data Journal : Taxonomic paper
Taxonomic paper

The millipede Typhloglomeris caucasica Golovatch, 1975 found epigeically (Diplopoda, Glomerida, Glomeridellidae)

expand article infoSergei Golovatch, Yuri A. Chumachenko§
‡ Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow , Russia
§ Caucasian State Biosphere Nature Reserve, Research Department, Sovetskaya Street 187, Maikop, Republic of Adygeya, Russia
Open Access


The millipede Typhloglomeris caucasica Golovatch, hitherto considered as a troglobite confined to several caves near Sochi, western Caucasus, Russia, is recorded epigeically in the same region, and is therefore a troglophile.


Diplopod, Typhloglomeris caucasica, Caucasus, Sochi, cave, forest litter, new record


The small diplopod family Glomeridellidae contains only two valid genera: Glomeridella Brölemann, 1913, with 7-8 species ranging from France in the west, through the eastern Alps, to the Balkans in the east, and Typhloglomeris Verhoeff, 1898, with about 15 species, a few of which are presumed troglobites, from the Balkans, Caucasus, northwestern Iran, and Asia Minor (Golovatch 2003, Makarov et al. 2003). All Glomeridella and most Typhloglomeris species show distinctive colour patterns and are known to be epigean, but even among the few colourless representatives not all are troglobites. Thus, T. fiumarana Verhoeff, 1899 has been regarded as possibly a geobiont (Golovatch 1989, Golovatch 2003) because it was found in Croatia under stones, not in a cave. Similarly, T. alba (Golovatch, 1989), in which only the ocelli are pigmented, whereas the rest of the body is pallid, is clearly epigean in northwestern Anatolia, Turkey (Golovatch 1989). Only the following fully unpigmented congeners have hitherto been referred to as troglobites (Golovatch 1975, Golovatch 1989, Golovatch 2003, Makarov et al. 2003): T. coeca Verhoeff, 1898, from Croatia and Montenegro, T. varunae Makarov, Lučić, Tomić & Karaman, 2003, from Macedonia, T. seuti Makarov, Lučić, Tomić & Karaman, 2003, from Montenegro, and T. caucasica Golovatch, 1975, from near Sochi, western Caucasus, Russia. Furthermore, based on several morphological characters, Makarov et al. 2003 treat T. caucasica as representing a species group of its own, the caucasica-group.

Taxon treatment

Typhloglomeris caucasica Golovatch, 1975

Material    Download as CSV 
  1. kingdom:
    ; phylum:
    ; class:
    ; order:
    ; family:
    ; genus:
    ; specificEpithet:
    ; scientificNameAuthorship:
    Golovatch, 1975
    ; country:
    ; stateProvince:
    ; verbatimLocality:
    Khosta, Caucasian Biosphere Nature Reserve
    ; samplingProtocol:
    pitfall trapping
    ; eventDate:
    14 July - 10 August 2006
    ; habitat:
    Taxus & Buxus relict forest
    ; individualCount:
    ; sex:
    ; recordedBy:
    Y. A. Chumachenko
    ; institutionCode:
    Zoological Museum, Moscow State University, Russia

Taxon discussion

The recent discovery of T. caucasica in a pitfall trap in forest near Sochi indicates that the ecological status of this species is a troglophile, not a troglobite, when it occurs in caves in the same area. This record emphasizes the need to carefully collect near and outside caves when assessing the degree of cavernicoly of endogean animals.


This work has been supported in part through a grant released to the first author by the Russian Ministry of Education and Science.


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