~4150 spp. in ~1340 genera of ~70 families total(1)
Members of Laniatores have captures spines on all or most segments of the pedipalps (sometimes reduced, as in Fumontana, Vonones).
Most have comparatively short legs, i.e., not a great deal longer than the body (cave-modified taxa are exceptions).
Widespread, but preferring forested habitats. Centers of diversity include western US and southern Appalachians
US & Canadian members of this group are reclusive predators, typically found in forested upland habitats under rocks and/or logs, and in leaf litter. Caves represent another important habitat for NA laniatores, with many genera/species restricted to cave habitats (e.g., Speleomaster, Speleonychia, Banksula, etc). Unlike many tropical Laniatores which are conspicuous nocturnal wanderers, it is rare to find NA laniatores "exposed" or wandering on the surface. Search for Laniatores under rocks and/or logs, by sifting leaf litter, or using a Berlese funnel.
Egg, juvenile, adult male/female. Reproduce sexually through direct insemination. Females lay eggs using an ovipositor.
Some Neotropical members of this group (e.g., Ampheres leucopheus) are known to exhibit postzygotic paternal care - the only known examples of this occurring in the Arachnida.
Kury A.B. (2003) Annotated catalogue of the Laniatores of the New World (Arachnida, Opiliones). Rev. Iber. Aracnol., special monographic volume 1. 337 pp.
Ryotaro Hara M., Gnaspini P., Machado G. (2003) Male egg guarding behavior in the Neotropical harvestman Ampheres leucopheus (Mello-Leitao 1922) (Opiliones, Gonyleptidae). Journal of Arachnology 31: 441-444.