Palatov D.M.1, Sokolova A.M.2 2021. Two new stygobiotic species of the genus Proasellus (Crustacea: Isopoda: Asellidae) from the North Caucasus // Invertebrate Zoology. Vol.18. No.4: 481–501 [in English].
1 A.N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of Russian Academy of Science, Leninsky Prt., 33, Moscow 119071 Russia. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 N.K. Koltzov Institute of Developmental Biology of Russian Academy of Science, Vavilova str., 26, Moscow, 119334, Russia. E-mail: email@example.com
ABSTRACT. Two new stygobiotic species of the genus Proasellus Dudich, 1925 (Crustacea: Isopoda), P. uallagirus sp.n. and P. irystonicus sp.n., are described from ground waters of Alagyr Gorge (North Ossetia – Alania, Russia). These samples are the first Proasellus representatives found in the Terek River basin and in the North Caucasus. Both species are morphologically close to the Transcaucasian species, especially P. linearis (Birstein, 1967), but can be easily distinguished by several characters. P. uallagirus sp.n. differs in shape of pleopodes, size ratio of pleopod exopodites and endopodites, and arming of internal surface of the pereopod I propodus. P. irystonicus sp.n. also differs in arming of pereopods I–VII dactiluses. The two new species can be easily distinguished from each other by armature of pereopod I–VII dactiluses, body size, and some characters of pleopods, especially pleopodes II of males. They also had different ecological preferences: P. uallagirus sp.n. inhabits hyporhean streams and springs, while P. irystonicus sp.n. dwells in underground streams flowing through an abandoned mine.
KEY WORDS: Crustacea, Isopoda, Asellidae, Proasellus, new species, stygobiotns, North Caucasus, Ossetia.