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Rhigonematida from New Britain diplopods. 2. The genera Rhigonema Cobb, 1898 and Zalophora Hunt, 1994 (Rhigonematoidea: Rhigonematidae) with descriptions of three new species

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For more content, see Nematologica.

Three new species from the genera Rhigonema and Zalophora are described and illustrated from two unidentified species of spirobolid diplopod from New Britain. The species proposed are Rhigonema licinacanthum sp. n., Zalophora deinostoma sp. n. and Z. nemophila sp. n. A second population of R. tribonophorum Hunt, 1995 is described and the original description supplemented, caudal rugosities being recorded in the male for the first time in the genus. SEM micrographs supplement the descriptions. The bionomics of Zalophora are discussed and evidence presented to show that, unlike the other members of the Rhigonematida, Zalophora species are predators on the other nematode inhabitants of the diplopod gut. It is postulated that this trophic specialism may explain such unusual aspects as the occurrence of only one adult female Zalophora per diplopod host, the low prevalence of juveniles and the apparent absence of males. Rhigonematida de Nouvelle-Bretagne. 2. Les genres Rhigonema Cobb, 1898 et Zalophora Hunt, 1994 (Rhigonematoidea: Rhigonematidae) et description de trois nouvelles especes - Trois nouvelles especes des genres Rhigonema et Zalophora sont decrites et illustrees provenant de deux especes non identifiees de diplopodes spirobolides originaires de Nouvelle-Bretagne. Ces especes sont Rhigonema licinacanthum sp. n., Zalophora deinostoma sp. n. et Z. nemophila sp. n. Une seconde population de R. tribonophorum Hunt, 1995 est decrite et illustree et la description originale est completee, des rugosites caudales ayant ete observees chez le male pour la premiere fois dans le genre. Des photos au microscope electronique a balayage completent les descriptions. L'ecologie du genre Zalophora est discutee et une preuve certaine est presentee selon laquelle, a la difference des autres membres des Rhigonematida, les especes de Zalophora sont predatrices des autres nematodes presents dans les intestins des diplopodes. Il est postule que cette specialisation trophique pourrait expliquer certaines caracteristiques inhabituelles tels la presence d'une seule femelle adulte de Zalophora par diplopode, la faible frequence des juveniles et l'apparente absence des males.


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