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A new species of Lovenula Schmeil (Copepoda, Calanoida, Diaptomidae) from the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa

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Recent collections from the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa yielded an undescribed species of the freshwater diaptomid copepod genus Lovenula. It is probably the largest paradiaptomine known and closely resembles L. falcifera (Lovén, 1845). This species, L. raynerae n. sp., differs in several characters, including the shape of the female genital operculum, but particularly in details of the male and female leg 5: on the female the size of the endopod, a distinctive protuberance on the first exopodal segment; on male leg 5, the features of the seta adjacent to the claw of the right leg, a subdistal endopodal spine of the same ramus and details of the claw, with a middle gap on the inner margin. As with L. falcifera, the new species was collected from an ephemeral habitat. A record of L. falcifera from Ethiopia probably represents an undescribed species. A key to the species of the genus is provided.

Affiliations: 1: 1El Colegio de la Frontera Sur (ECOSUR)-Chetumal, A.P. 424. Chetumal, Quintana Roo 77000, Mexico; 2: 2South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity (SAIAB), Private Bag 1015, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa; 3: 3Zoology and Entomology, Rhodes University, P.O. Box 94, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa


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