Amphorella melampoides 

Scope: Global & Europe
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Mollusca Gastropoda Stylommatophora Ferussaciidae

Scientific Name: Amphorella melampoides (R. Lowe, 1831)
Achatina tornatellina maxima Paiva, 1867
Ferussacia melampoides R. Lowe, 1831
Glandina melampoides R. Lowe, 1831
Helix melampoides R. Lowe, 1831
Lovea melampoides R. Lowe, 1831
Taxonomic Source(s): Bank, R.A. 2013. Fauna Europaea: Mollusca: Gastropoda. Available at:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2016-10-26
Assessor(s): Abreu, C., Cameron, R., Seddon, M.B. & Teixeira, D.
Reviewer(s): Groh, K. & Allen, D.J.
This species is endemic to the Madeira Archipelago (Portugal), where it is found on the Island of Porto Santo and adjacent offshore islets (Ilheu da Baixo, Ilheu da Ferro, Ilheu da Fora and Ilheu de Cima). Although the species has a restricted range, the population trend is regarded as stable, and the species is present on four different islands, while some of them have active habitat management and control of the threats. Hence, the species is assessed as Least Concern (LC).
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to the Madeira Archipelago (Portugal) in the Atlantic Ocean. Wollaston (1878) recorded the species as only found on the Island of Cima off the coast of Porto Santo. This made Waldén suggest to assess the species as Vulnerable in the 1980s as it was considered a rare species (Wells and Chatfield 1992).

However, more recent surveys found the species on Porto Santo, where it is present in coastal locations around the southwestern coast from Ponta de Canaveira to Campo do Baixo, wich an additional location on the east coast, east of Serra da Dentro (based on data from Cameron et al. (1996), and Seddon surveys (1984 to 1995) compiled in Seddon (2008). The species is also recorded from Ilheu da Baixo, Ilheu da Ferro and Ilheu de Cima (Abreu and Teixeira 2008, Seddon 2008).

Recent surveys (2010 to 2015) by Teixeira and Silva as part of the Life Project on Porto Santo have confirmed the continued presence of the species on the Ilheu da Baixo, Ilheu da Ferro, Ilheu de Fora and Ilheu de Cima (Teixeira and Silva pers. comm. 2016).
Countries occurrence:
Portugal (Madeira)
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:40
Number of Locations:10-20
Upper elevation limit (metres):300
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:There are no data that would allow the assessment of total population size, however, where present it is not usually rare (M. Seddon pers. comm. 2016).
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The species is found under stones and amongst grasses and herbs. Like many species of its genus, it is more common in damper areas.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: There is no major trade for this species, although some shell dealers offer it for sale to shell collectors.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The major threats in the past were the presence of introduced predators, such as mice and rats, as well as rabbits, which caused frequent overgrazing of habitats. These threats have been reduced as a result of the EU Life Programme Project (Domingues and Alves 2016) as on the off-shore islets between 2010 and 2015 there has been a programme to eradicate the mice.

An unknown future threat may be the increased frequency of droughts and potential impact of grassland fires, but the offshore islets should be free of the latter threat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species is not listed as a notable species on the EU Habitats Directive, however it exists in areas where other species are protected. The threats to the species have been reduced as a result of the EU Life Programme Project (Domingues and Alves 2016) as on the off-shore islets between 2010 and 2015 where there has been a programme to eradicate the mice.

It is necessary to carry out monitoring programmes to detect any changes in the habitat or population trend, and to be able to act quickly if any species that may harm the snail community is introduced again.

Citation: Abreu, C., Cameron, R., Seddon, M.B. & Teixeira, D. 2017. Amphorella melampoides. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T1170A86016278. . Downloaded on 19 September 2018.
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