East African pholcid spiders: an overview

(published in European Journal of Taxonomy
, 2012, PDF 19MB)

After Embrik Strand's description of the first East African pholcid spider species in 1906, progress was slow for almost a century. Until the end of the 20th century, the total increased to no more than 19 currently valid species
    That this is in stark contrast to the actual diversity of the region was first demonstrated by a spider inventory made in the Tanzanian Uzungwa Mountains by Line Sørensen and coauthors. Pholcids were not only the most abundant spider family but proved to be represented in the area by a rich and highly endemic fauna.
    Most of this material and of other material available in collections has since been studied and at the level of genera our knowledge about East African pholcids can probably be considered as fairly complete. The present paper describes some species that were not included in recent revisions
(Huber, 2003a, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012), and summarizes current knowledge about East African pholcids. Within a decade, the number of known species has increased more than fourfold to now 89 species.