Cyclopes didactylus (Northeastern Brazil subpopulation)


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Cyclopes didactylus (Northeastern Brazil subpopulation)
Species Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Parent Species:
Common Name/s:
English Silky Anteater
Taxonomic Notes: The taxonomic status of this isolated population of Cyclopes didactylus needs to be confirmed.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2010-05-24
Assessor/s: Miranda, F. & Superina, M.
Reviewer/s: Meritt, D.A. & Bermúdez Larrazabal, L.
There is no doubt that rapid and ongoing deforestation of the Atlantic Forest is negatively affecting the northeastern population of Cyclopes didactylus, as the species cannot survive in the sugar cane plantations that are replacing the native vegetation in this area and the remaining patches of suitable habitat are increasingly fragmented. It is therefore highly probable that this population requires listing in a threatened category. The lack of basic data on its ecology, population size and density, however, currently do not allow a realistic assessment of its conservation status. The northeastern population of C. didactylus is therefore classified as Data Deficient. Field studies are urgently needed to confirm the taxonomic status of this population and to obtain sufficient information for an appropriate assessment of its conservation status.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This subpopulation of the Silky Anteater (Cyclopes didactylus) occurs in coastal northeastern Brazil, in the states of Paraíba, Pernambuco, Alagoas and Rio Grande do Norte (Miranda and Superina, submitted). It is isolated from the main Silky Anteater population by approximately 1,000 km.
Brazil (Alagoas, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Rio Grande do Norte)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: No data are available on the population size or density of this isolated population of C. didactylus. Ongoing deforestation is likely to further decimate the wild population of this smallest of all anteaters.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The northeastern subpopulation of C. didactylus is restricted to tropical moist lowland forests. Nothing is known about the biology or ecology of this smallest of all anteaters.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The northeastern population of C. didactylus is severely threatened by rapid deforestation of its suitable habitat (Atlantic Forest) due to the increase in sugar cane plantations, which, in addition to direct habitat loss, also leads to habitat fragmentation and degradation. Only five percent of the original extent of suitable habitat remain intact (Galindo-Leal and De Gusmão Câmara 2003). The current area of Atlantic Forest in the range states amounts to approximately 3,000 km² (Campanili and Prochnow 2006). Furthermore, Silky Anteaters are captured for illegal trade (F. Miranda pers. comm. 2010).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no State or National parks within the range of the northeastern Brazil subpopulation of C. didactylus.
Citation: Miranda, F. & Superina, M. 2011. Cyclopes didactylus (Northeastern Brazil subpopulation). In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <>. Downloaded on 23 April 2014.
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