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Milne Co-Authors Manuscript on 10 New Spider Species

Dr. Marc Milne, associate professor of Biology, recently co-authored with Dr. Marshal Hedin, professor at San Diego University, the article, “New species in old mountains: integrative taxonomy reveals ten new species and extensive short-range endemism in Nesticus spiders (Araneae, Nesticidae) from the southern Appalachian Mountains.

In the article, Drs. Milne and Hedin describe ten new species of Nesticus spiders from Appalachia.

 “Many of the species we studied are troglobiontic, short-range endemics (in other words, they are cave-restricted species not known from the surface and known from only one or two caves),” said Dr. Milne. “These species are of conservation concern as their habitats are fragile, and they may not live anywhere else in the world. In the article, we discuss the importance of protecting these habitats in the face of habitat alteration and worsening climate change.”

“This is the largest and most detailed manuscript I’ve ever helped write at over 130 pages with over 60 figures,” added Dr. Milne. “Being able to co-author a publication with Dr. Hedin is an honor. He’s become one of the greats in the arachnology world, and I learned a good deal working by his side on this manuscript. I hope to use some of these same methods on future revisions of sheet-web weaving spiders.”