Phylogenomic analysis, reclassification, and evolution of South American nemesioid burrowing mygalomorph spiders
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The family Nemesiidae was once among the most species-rich of mygalomorph spider families. However, over the past few decades both morphological and molecular studies focusing on mygalomorph phylogeny have recovered the group as paraphyletic. Hence, the systematics of the family Nemesiidae has more recently been controversial, with numerous changes at the family-group level and the recognition of the supra-familial clade Nemesioidina. Indeed, in a recent study by Opatova and collaborators, six nemesiid genera were transferred to the newly re-established family Pycnothelidae. Despite these changes, 12 South American nemesiid genera remained unplaced, and classified as incertae sedis due to shortcomings in taxon sampling. Accordingly, we evaluate the phylogenetic relationships of South American nemesioid species and genera with the principle aim of resolving their family level placement. Our work represents the most exhaustive phylogenomic sampling for South American Nemesiidae by including nine of the 12 genera described for the continent. Phylogenetic relationships were reconstructed using 457 loci obtained using the spider Anchored Hybrid Enrichment probe set. Based on these results Nemesiidae, Pycnothelidae, Microstigmatidae and Cyrtaucheniidae are not considered monophyletic. Our study also indicates that the lineage including the genus Fufius requires elevation to the family level (Rhytidicolidae Simon, 1903 (NEW RANK)). In Pycnothelidae, we recognize/delimit five subfamilies (Diplothelopsinae, Pionothelinae (NEW SUBFAMILY), Prorachiinae (NEW SUBFAMILY), Pselligminae (NEW RANK), Pycnothelinae). We also transfer all the 12 South American nemesiid genera to Pycnothelidae: Chaco, Chilelopsis, Diplothelopsis, Flamencopsis, Hermachura, Longistylus, Lycinus, Neostothis, Prorachias, Psalistopoides, Pselligmus, Rachias. Additionally, we transferred the microstigmatid genus Xenonemesia to Pycnothelidae, and we propose the following generic synonymies and species transfers: Neostothis and Bayana are junior synonyms of Pycnothele (NEW SYNONYMY), as P. gigas and P. labordai, respectively (NEW COMBINATIONS); Hermachura is a junior synonym of Stenoterommata (NEW SYNONYMY), as S. luederwaldti (NEW COMBINATION); Flamencopsis is a junior synonym of Chilelopsis (NEW SYNONYMY), as C. minima (NEW COMBINATION); and Diplothelopsis is a junior synonym of Lycinus (NEW SYNONYMY), as L. ornatus and L. bonariensis (NEW COMBINATIONS). Considering the transferred genera and synonymies, Pycnothelidae now includes 15 described genera and 137 species. Finally, these results provide a robust phylogenetic framework that includes enhanced taxonomic sampling, for further resolving the biogeography and evolutionary time scale for the family Pycnothelidae.