Two new species of mid-Cretaceous webspinners in amber from northern Myanmar (Embiodea: Clothodidae, Oligotomidae)

Michael S. Engel, Diying Huang, Laura C.V. Breitkreuz, Chenyang Cai, Mabel Alvarado

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12 Scopus citations


Two new genera and species of Cretaceous webspinners (Embiodea) are described and figured, both preserved in amber from northern Myanmar. Atmetoclothoda orthotenes Engel and Huang, gen. et sp. nov., is the first fossil representative of the putatively primitive family Clothodidae, and is segregated into its own subfamily, Atmetoclothodinae Engel and Huang, subfam. nov., owing to its primitive retention of a distinct mentum, a quadrate submentum with straight borders, a postocciptal suture that meets the hypostomal sulcus at the posterior tentorial pit, and subgenae that do not meet medially (thus a ventral bridge or gula is lacking), completely symmetrical terminalia, and unsegmented cerci that apically bear a small inner lamellar projection. Litoclostes delicatus Engel and Huang, gen. et sp. nov., is the first definitive fossil of Oligotomidae (not including a subfossil species in Pleistocene copal and which is likely synonymous with an extant taxon), and differs from modern genera in a combination of head, tarsal, and terminalic morphology. The new fossil species double the known Cretaceous fossils and add a further two families to the Mesozoic record for the order.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118-124
Number of pages7
JournalCretaceous Research
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The work of D.-Y.H. has been supported by grants from the National Basic Research Program of China ( 2012CB821903 ), the Outstanding Youth Foundation of Jiangsu Province ( BK 2012049 ), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China ( 91114201 ). The participation of L.C.V.B. and M.S.E. was partially supported by U.S. National Science Foundation grant DEB-1144162 (to M.S.E.). We are grateful to two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on the manuscript. We dedicate this paper to Edward S. Ross in celebration of his centennial year (having turned 100 on 1 September 2015), and whose lifetime of exploration throughout the world into the biology of Embiodea has contributed more to our knowledge of the order than any other. This is a contribution of the Division of Entomology, University of Kansas Natural History Museum.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Ltd.


  • Cenomanian
  • Clothodidae
  • Embioptera
  • Oligotomidae
  • Polyneoptera
  • Taxonomy


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