Phisalixella variabilis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Pseudoxyrhophiidae

Scientific Name: Phisalixella variabilis (Boulenger, 1896)
Stenophis variabilis Boulenger, 1896
Taxonomic Notes: Nagy et al. 2010 removed Stenophis tulearensis from synonymy with this species (where it had been placed by Vences et al. 2004).The same authors elevated the subgenus Phisalixella to a full genus. The taxonomic identity of both P. tulearensis and P. variabilis requires further clarification (M. Vences pers. comm. January 2011).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2011-01-25
Assessor(s): Vences, M., Glaw, F. & Rakotondravony, H.
Reviewer(s): Bowles, P. & Cox, N.A.
Listed as Endangered as the extent of occurrence is only 2,233 km², it occurs as a severely fragmented population and there is a continuing decline in the quality and extent of the species' habitat.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This snake is endemic to Madagascar, where it seems to be restricted to several localities in the north and northwest (M. Vences pers. comm. January 2011). Its extent of occurrence may be as low as 2,233 km².
Countries occurrence:
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


This snake appears to be a relatively rare species, but it may be just difficult to find. Due to human pressures on, and the patchy distribution of, remaining dry forest within its range, the population of this forest-dependent snake is presumed to be both declining and severely fragmented.

Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This arboreal snake is found in dry forest where it is active on trees at night. It can be found in degraded forest, but not outside of forested areas.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade:

This species is not thought to be traded or used.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Logging and expanding agriculture are damaging the dry forest where this species occurs.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is known from Ankarana Special Reserve and Montagne d'Ambre National Park, and these reserves should be managed to limit human impacts on critical dry forest habitat for this species. Protection of additional dry forest sites may be required to ensure the persistence of this snake. Research is needed to better-understand the limits of this snake's distribution, and to monitor population trends in response to forest degradation. The taxonomic identity of this species requires clarification.

Citation: Vences, M., Glaw, F. & Rakotondravony, H. 2011. Phisalixella variabilis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T172802A6921071. . Downloaded on 27 April 2018.
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