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Metacyclops (Copepoda, Cyclopidae) from Ayyalon Cave, Israel

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A new species of Cyclopidae (Copepoda, Cyclopoida) is described from Ayyalon Cave, Israel, as Metacyclops longimaxillis n. sp. The description is based on specimens collected in a small, brackish, warm and sulfidic water pool, recently described from this cave that belongs to the Yarqon-Tanninim aquifer. The new taxon is distinguished by specific morphological traits, but in particular by the remarkable maxillae, the large size of which may be related to the specific environmental conditions in which these crustaceans are living. Its closest similar congener is M. stammeri Kiefer, 1938, with which it mainly shares the terminal seta and spine on endopodal segment 2 of P4 in both male and female, the armature of two setae and the strong exopodal seta on the basipodite of the antenna, the spine formula of the exopodites of the swimming legs (, the general shape and setation of the furca with the inner median seta enlarged at its base; the 11-segmented female antennule, and the segmentation pattern of the antennule. They principally differ by their body size, the shape of the seminal receptacle, the setation of the antenna, the structure of the male antennule, the ornamentation of the intercoxal plates of the swimming legs, and the structure of the male P6. Some information and a description of the only other cyclopid found at this site, attributed to Metacyclops subdolus Kiefer, 1938, is given in addition. Une espèce nouvelle de Cyclopidae (Copepoda, Cyclopoida) est décrite de la grotte d'Ayyalon, Israel, Metacyclops longimaxillis n. sp., à partir de spécimens collectés dans une petite mare d'eau saline chaude, riche en sulfites, récemment découverte dans cette grotte appartenant au réseau aquifère Yarqon-Tanninim. La nouvelle espèce se distingue par des caractères morphologiques spécifiques, mais surtout par sa maxille, remarquable, dont la grande taille pourrait être en rapport avec les conditions environnementales particulières dans lesquelles vivent ces crustacés. L'espèce la plus proche est M. stammeri Kiefer, 1938 avec laquelle elle partage la soie et l'épine terminales de l'endopodite 2 de P4, présentes dans les deux sexes, l'armature du basipodite de l'antenne composée de deux soies et d'une forte soie exopodale, la formule des épines des exopodites des pattes natatoires (, la forme générale de la furca, avec la soie furcale interne élargie à sa base, le modèle de segmentation de l'antennule à 11 segments de la femelle. Elles diffèrent principalement par leur taille, la forme du réceptacle séminal, la structure de l'antennule mâle, l'ornementation des plaques intercoxales des pattes natatoires et la structure de la P6 mâle. Une nouvelle description ainsi que des informations complémentaires sont également données sur l'autre espèce de cyclopide présent dans le site, Metacyclops subdolus Kiefer, 1938.

Affiliations: 1: Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle, Département Milieux et Peuplements Aquatiques UMR 7208, CP 53, 61, rue de Buffon, F-75005 Paris, France;, Email:; 2: Department of Evolution, Systematics and Ecology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Edmund Safra Campus, Jerusalem 91904, Israel;, Email:


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