(091/OLsch) Oligaphorura schoetti (Lie Pettersen, 1897)

Oligaphorura (formerly Archaphorura) schoetti is a true troglobite; all records are from caves where it appears to be quite common. 

Oligaphorura schoetti reaches 1.7 mm in length. The post-antennal organ is small with three or four elongated vesicles (Fig. 1). Fjellberg (1998) and Pomorski (1998) say that only females have been found but there is a male specimen among the NHML slides from St. Cuthberts Swallet in Somerset collected in 1969 (the name of the collector is not written on the label but was probably the expedition of WGR(Bill) Maxwell and Pat Bowne). Unfortunately, at least a third of the slides of Oligaphorura schoetti are in very bad condition and it is not possible to confirm their identity. The high fat content (typical of cave-dwellers) may be to blame. 

There is a trace of a furca on the ventral side of the fourth abdominal segment (Fig. 2), the anal spines are conical in shape (Fig. 3) and the empodium is about the same length as the claw (Fig. 4).

 

The UK has only 4 troglobite Collembola; this, Pseudosinella dobati, Folsomia agrelli and Disarrhopalites patrizii

 

Map Oligaphorura schoetti
Post-antennal organ of Oligaphorura schoetti

Fig. 1: Post-antennal organ (PAO) of Oligaphorura schoetti collected from Ogof Pen Eryr, Brecon, Wales Ferriby, Yorkshire in March 1970 (collector not known).

Vestigial furca of Oligaphorura schoetti

Fig. 2: Vestigial furca of the same specimen of Oligaphorura schoetti shown in Fig. 1

Anal spines of Oligaphorura schoetti

Fig. 3 (above): Anal spines of the same specimen of Oligaphorura schoetti shown in Fig. 1

Foot of the third leg of Oligaphorura schoetti

Fig. 4: Foot of the third leg of the same specimen of Oligaphorura schoetti shown in Fig. 1

 
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