Cicurina madla - Gertsch, 1992
Madla Cave Meshweaver
Other English Common Names: Madla's Cave Spider
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.113296
Element Code: ILARA73030
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Invertebrates - Spiders and Other Chelicerates - Spiders and Other Arachnids
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Chelicerata Arachnida Araneae Dictynidae Cicurina
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Gertsch, W. J. 1992. Distribution patterns and speciation in North American cave spiders with a list of the troglobites and revision of the cicurinas of the subgenus Cicurella. Texas Mem. Mus., Speleol. Monogr. 3:75-122.
Concept Reference Code: A92GER01EHUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Cicurina madla
Taxonomic Comments: Subgenus Cicurella. Previously placed in the family Agelenidae. This species has been referred to by two common names, Madla's Cave Spider and Madla Cave meshweaver (Breene et al. 2003). The latter name has been accepted as the official common name (Breene et al. 2003, USFWS 2003).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G1
Global Status Last Reviewed: 06May2009
Global Status Last Changed: 06May2009
Rounded Global Status: G1 - Critically Imperiled
Reasons: This species is known from eight caves in Bexar County, Texas. The rank of all nine troglobites listed as endangered in Bexar County (USFWS, 2000) is not based primarily on the number of individuals, known locations or decline (all of which are unknown), but rather on the threats these species are facing. Due to the increased urbanization and population growth in Bexar County, these species are undergoing habitat loss and other threats associated with this urbanization. In addition, the status or continued existence of caves in Bexar County is unknown (USFWS, 2008). Also, Madla's Drop Cave was reported to have a very heavy fire ant infestation (Reddell, 1993).
Nation: United States
National Status: N1N2 (21Aug2002)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Texas (S1)

Other Statuses

U.S. Endangered Species Act (USESA): LE: Listed endangered (26Dec2000)
Comments on USESA: There are nine Bexar County, Texas invertebrates that were listed as endangered on December 26, 2000. The recovery priority number for all Bexar County karst invertebrates is 2c, which means that these species face a high degree of threat with a high potential for recovery and there may be conflict between species recovery and economic development. Critical Habitat has been designated for C. madla (USFWS 2003).
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Lead Region: R2 - Southwest

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: Unknown
Range Extent Comments: Only known from Bexar County, Texas, from caves in Government Canyon (Lost Pothole), Helotes (Christmas Cave, Helotes Blowhole, Madla's Cave, and Madla's Drop Cave), UTSA (Hills and Dales Pit, and Robbers Cave), and Stone Oak (Headquarters Cave) Karst Fauna Regions. Genetic research by Paquin and Hedin (2004) suggests that additional Bexar County populations of this species may exist. Also reported from Goat Cave by Miller and Reddell (2005) and Flying Buzzworm Cave by Veni and Associates (2005). Both are awaiting verification.

Number of Occurrences: 6 - 20
Number of Occurrences Comments: Currently known from the following eight caves in Bexar County, Texas: Christmas Cave, Madla's Cave, Madla's Drop Cave, Helotes Blowhole, Headquarters Cave, Hills and Dales Pit, Robber's Cave, and Lost Pothole.

Population Size: Unknown
Population Size Comments: Population estimates are unavailable for any of the nine troglobites listed as endangered in Bexar County (USFWS, 2000) due to lack of adequate techniques, their cryptic behavior, and inaccessibility of habitat (USFWS, 2008). Culver et al. (2000) states that while some troglobites are known from a few specimens, detailed studies suggest that "as a rule" most troglobites "are not numerically rare and thus are not susceptible to the problems of small populations." However, considering the lack of population estimates and limited study of these species, data are insufficient to indicate whether Bexar County karst invertebrates are numerous enough to rule out small population concerns (USFWS, 2008).

Overall Threat Impact: High
Overall Threat Impact Comments: The following summary is taken from USFWS (2008). For specific threat information, refer to USFWS (2000, 2008). Also see Elliott (2000) for a thorough review of threats and conservation of North American cave species.

The primary threat to all nine Bexar County troglobites listed as endangered is habitat loss. Caves and karst habitat are lost directly by being completely filled in during development, or by quarrying away the rock that they are comprised of. Filling in cave entrances or severely altering entrances is also destructive and may result in habitat loss. Caves and karst may be lost indirectly by degrading the habitat to the point that the cave and karst can no longer support the species or the long term viability of the population is reduced. Examples of this habitat degradation include: altering drainage patterns, altering native surface plant and animal communities, reducing or increasing nutrient flow, contamination, excessive human visitation, and competition and predation from non-native, invasive species.

In addition, Madla's Drop Cave was reported to have a very heavy fire ant infestation (Reddell, 1993).

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Highly vulnerable

Environmental Specificity: Very narrow. Specialist or community with key requirements scarce.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Protection Needs: Based on USFWS (2008), reduce threats to the species by securing an adequate quantity and quality of caves, including selecting caves or cave clusters that represent the range of the species and potential genetic diversity, then preserving these caves, including their drainage basins and surface communities upon which they rely. Maintenance of these cave preserves involves keeping them free from contamination, excessive human visitation, and non-native fire ants by regularly tracking progress and implementing adaptive management to control these and any new threats when necessary. Monitoring the population status and threats are also components of recovery. Because many aspects of the population dynamics and habitat requirements of the species are poorly understood, recovery is also dependant on incorporating research findings into adaptive management actions.

Distribution
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Global Range: (Unknown) Only known from Bexar County, Texas, from caves in Government Canyon (Lost Pothole), Helotes (Christmas Cave, Helotes Blowhole, Madla's Cave, and Madla's Drop Cave), UTSA (Hills and Dales Pit, and Robbers Cave), and Stone Oak (Headquarters Cave) Karst Fauna Regions. Genetic research by Paquin and Hedin (2004) suggests that additional Bexar County populations of this species may exist. Also reported from Goat Cave by Miller and Reddell (2005) and Flying Buzzworm Cave by Veni and Associates (2005). Both are awaiting verification.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
Endemism: endemic to a single state or province

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States TX

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
TX Bexar (48029)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
12 Medina (12100302)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A small, eyeless or essentially eyeless cave-dwelling spider.
Habitat Type: Terrestrial
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Subterranean Habitat(s): Subterrestrial
Special Habitat Factors: Subterranean obligate
Habitat Comments: Found among loose rocks or mud balls. Since they typically spin their webs underneath rocks and in crevices, they are probably dependant on this type of habitat (Veni and Associates 2006).
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 07May2009
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Capuano, N.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Breene, R.G., D.A. Dean, G.B. Edwards, B. Hebert, H.W. Levi, G. Manning, K. McWest, and L. Sorkin. 2003. Common names of Arachnids 2003. 5th edition. The American Arachnological Society Committee on Common Names of Arachnids. American Tarantula Society.

  • Cokendolpher, J.C. 2004. Cicurina spiders from caves in Bexar County, Texas (Araneae: Dictynidae). Texas Memorial Museum, Speleological Monographs 6:13-58.

  • Culver, D.C., L.L. Master, M.C. Christman, and H.H. Hobbs III. 2000. Obligate cave fauna of the 48 contiguous United States. Conservation Biology 14(2):386-401.

  • Elliott, W. R. 2000. Conservation of the North American cave and karst biota. Pages 665-689 in Wilkens, H., D.C. Culver, and W.F. Humphreys (editors). Subterranean Ecosystems. Ecosystems of the World, 30. Elsevier, Amsterdam. xiv + 791 pp. Corrected version online. Available: http://www.utexas.edu/tmm/sponsored_sites/biospeleology/namcons.htm.

  • Gertsch, W. J. 1992. Distribution patterns and speciation in North American cave spiders with a list of the troglobites and revision of the cicurinas of the subgenus Cicurella. Texas Mem. Mus., Speleol. Monogr. 3:75-122.

  • KINGLSEY, KENNETH J. AND STEVEN W. CAROTHERS. 2000. A REVIEW OF THE STATUS OF SEVEN SPECIES OF INVERTEBRATES (TEXELLA COKENDOLPHERI, BATRISODES VENYIVI, NEOLEPTONETA MICROPS, CICURINA BARONIA, CICURINA MADLA, CICURINA VENII, AND CICURINA VESPERA) PROPOSED FOR LISTING AS ENDANGERED IN BEXAR COUNTY, TEXAS: REVISED SECOND DRAFT. REPORT SUBMITTED TO U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, ECOLOGICAL FIELD OFFICE, AUSTIN, TEXAS. JANUARY 2000. 24 PP.

  • Longacre, C. 2000. Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Final Rule to List Nine Bexar County, Texas Invertebrate Species as Endangered. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). Federal Register 65(248).

  • Miller, J. and J. Reddell. 2005. Summary of biological collections and observations from caves at Government Canyon State Natural Area. 30 pp. Unpublished Report for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

  • Paquin, P., and M. Hedin. 2004. The power and perils of "molecular taxonomy": A case study of eyeless and endangered Cicurina (Araneae: Dictynidae) from Texas caves. Molecular Ecology 13: 3239-3255.

  • Rappaport, C. J. 1998. Department of Interior Fish and Wildlife Service 50 CFR part 17, RIN 1018-AF33, endangered and threatened wildlife and plants; proposal to list nine Bexar County, Texas invertebrate species as endangered. Federal Register, 63(250):71855-71867.

  • Reddell, J. R. 1993. Geologic and biologic investigation of potential habitat for endemic karst fauna in Bexar County, Texas. Biology: The status and range of endemic arthropods from caves in Bexar County, Texas. Report prepared for the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Austin, Texas. 90 pp.

  • Reddell, J.R. and J.C. Cokendolpher. 2004. The cave spiders of Bexar and Comal counties, Texas. Texas Memorial Museum, Speleological Monographs 6:75-94.

  • Stanford, R., and A. Shull. 1993. Department of Interior Fish and Wildlife Service 50 CFR part 17; 90-day finding on a petition to list nine Bexar County, TX, invertebrates. Federal Register, 58(229):63328-63329.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 1994. Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Animal Candidate Review for Listing as Endangered or Threatened Species. Federal Register 59(219):58982-59028.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 2001. Environmental assessment/habitat conservation plan for issuance of an Endangered Species Act Section l0(a)(1)(B) permit for the incidental take of two troglobitic ground beetles (Rhadine exilis and Rhadine infernalis) and Madla Cave meshweaver (Cicurina madla) during the construction and operation of commercial development on the approximately 1,000-acre La Cantera property, San Antonio, Bexar County, Texas. Technical Report.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 2003. Endangered and Threatened wildlife and plants; designation of critical habitat for seven Bexar County, Texas, invertebrate species; final rule. Federal Register 68(67): 17156-17231.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 2008. Draft Bexar County Karst Invertebrate Recovery Plan.125 pp.

  • Veni, G. and Associates. 2005. Hydrogeological, biological, archeological, and paleontological karst investigations, Camp Bullis, Texas, 1993-2005. Report for Natural and Cultural Resources, Environmental Division, Fort Sam Houston, Texas.

  • Veni, G. and Associates. 2006. Hydrogeological, biological, archeological, and paleontological karst investigations, Camp Bullis, Texas, 1993-2006. Report for Natural and Cultural Resources, Environmental Division, Fort Sam Houston, Texas.

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