Setascutum occur above 1200 metres above sea level, typically around 2000m asl, where they hide in rock cracks. They are midsized (14-20 mm body length), mostly dark brown with pales patches. Some have darker bases colour toward green-black. It is possible that the species are regional variants. The status of the genus is in question and is probably a junior synonym of Isoplectron.

Setascutum pallidum Richards, 1972
Body length: 13mm              
Ovipositor: 0.6x body length = 7.8mm; armed distally with a dorsal serrated margin, ventrally with seven teeth. Antennae: Very long and tapering.
Leg: body ratio
Fore: 1.2: 1   = 15.6mm  
Mid:  1.2: 1   = 15.6mm
Hind: 1.9:1  =  24.7mm
Locality: South Island. Old Man Range, Otago, (in crevice on tor, 1054 m). Notes: Closely related to S. ohauensis, but separated from it by lighter colouration, presence of retrolateral spines on hind femora, shape of suranal and subgenital plates of female, ovipositor armed with seven teeth.


Setascutum ohauense Richards, 1972
Body length:  Male: 17mm    Female: 11mm  
Ovipositor: 0.7x body length = 7.7mm Antennae: Very long and tapering, (no measurement given)” sexual dimorphism present, flagellum of the male being longer and stouter than the female. No spines present on flagellum”. (Antennae broken, Richards sample).
Leg: body ratio                                   
         Male                           Female
Fore:  1.2:1  =  20.4mm   1.2: 1  = 13.2mm
Mid:   1.2:1  =  20.4mm   1.2: 1  = 13.2mm
Hind: 2.2:1  =  37.4mm   2.0:1  = 22mm
Locality: South Island; Lake Ohau, Canterbury. Notes: Ovipositor serrated, many small serrations dorsally, 5 or 6 teeth on ventral valve. Female SGP two lobes, each twice as wide as long, with rounded apex and thickly clothed with setae.


  • Richards A.M. 1972. Revision of the Rhaphidophoridae of New Zealand. Part XIV. Three Alpine Genera from the South Island. Journal of  the Royal Society of New Zealand 172: 151 - 174