Akrav israchanani Levy, 2007
Eyeless cave scorpion
Taxonomy & Nomenclature
Last record early 1990's?
This species, the only member of its taxonomic family, and only discovered in 2006, is believed to have already been extinct by the time it was discovered. A bulldozer accidentally penetrated the wall of Ayyalon cave, which they had inhabited, allowing scientists to investigate it's interior. One of the new species they found was the Eyeless cave scorpion, or at least what was left of them. They only found about 10 exoskeletons (i.e. outer shells) of the extinct species (19 according to Fet et. al. 2011), which had become extinct because the water level inside the cave had dropped about 12m over several years as a result of pumping it for domestic use (Ilani, 2007).
A redescription of this species was published (Fet et. al. 2011), which included the suggestion that Akrav did not in fact belong to a new and unique family. Rather it should be placed within Typhlochactinae.
Five further specimens were reported by (Fet et al. 2017) from a nearby cave, Levana Cave.
Ayalon cave, Israel
c. 20 preserved individuals exist in museum collections.
HUJ Sc. 2673
HUJ Sc. 2674 to 2679 (n=6)
HUJ Sc. 2680 to 2684 (n=7)
Embryo (no accession number)
A vial with c. 5 individuals (no accession number)
Original scientific description:
Levy, Gershom. (2007). The first troglobite scorpion from Israel and a new chactoid family (Arachnida: Scorpiones). Zoology in the Middle East 40: 91-96. [Abstract]
Fet, Victor, Soleglad, Michael E. and Zonstein, Sergei L. (2011). The genus Akrav Levy, 2007 (Scorpiones: Akravidae) revisited. Euscorpius. 134: 1-49.
Fet, Victor, Soleglad, Michael E., Zonstein, Sergei L., Naaman, Israel, Lubaton, Shlomi, Langford, Boaz and Frumkin, Amos. (2017). The second record of a relict Akrav israchanani Levy, 2007 (Scorpiones: Akravidae) from Levana Cave, Israel. Euscorpius 247: 1-12.
Ilani, Ofri. (19th July, 2007). "One year later, "Noah's Ark" cave is no longer a safe haven". Haaretz.com. Downloaded on December 13, 2010.