Branchinecta pollicifera is redescribed from type material and additional material collected from Bolivian bofedal wetlands. Specific unique gonopod and genital segment features demonstrate that B. pollicifera constitutes a new genus, Archaebranchinecta, morphologically distinct from Branchinecta sensu stricto. Additionally, in B. pollicifera, the gonopod proximal projection is bifurcated as opposed to a spiniform Branchinecta, and the first abdominal segment bears a pair of ventrolateral spinule covered plates. These plates are unique amongst Anostraca. The form of the male second antennae in this species and in the related fossil species B. barstowensis demonstrates a potential close relationship, and this species is also referred to Archaebranchinecta. We also report melanisation in Andean anostracans.
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Vol. 31 • No. 4