Kanakysaurus viviparus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Scincidae

Scientific Name: Kanakysaurus viviparus Sadlier, Whitaker, Bauer & Smith, 2004
Taxonomic Notes: The population of Kanakysaurus on Dôme de Tiébaghi is genetically very close to Kanakysaurus zebratus yet is morphologically indistinguishable and genetically highly divergent from the Kanakysaurus viviparus with which it is sympatric. Whether this represents a distinct taxon or is the result of mitochondrial introgression awaits further research (Sadlier et al. 2009).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(i,ii,iii,iv)+2ab(i,ii,iii,iv) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2010-09-07
Assessor(s): Whitaker, A.H. & Sadlier, R.A.
Reviewer(s): Tognelli, M.F. & Cox, N.A.
Kanakysaurus viviparus is listed as Endangered because it has a restricted distribution and is exposed to a high threat from mining at two locations, high threat from invasive species at a third, and some potential risk from mining at the remaining two (Iles Belep).  On the islands, its proximity to human habitation and fire is potentially a threat. Ongoing threats from invasive species exist at all locations.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to Province Nord, New Caledonia. It is known from five locations: three in the far north of Grande Terre (the Poum and Dôme de Tiébaghi massifs, and Rivière Nehoué), and from the Iles Belep (both Ile Art and Ile Pott). It occurs at elevations of up to 500 m. The extent of occurrence is approximately 300 km² and the area of occupancy is estimated to be <50 km².

[Extent of occurrence was based on a crude measure of overall length times width of the most distant known locations (a rough measure of the line around the points), except for very widespread species where the published areas of the islands were taken. Area of occupancy is a contraction of that rough estimate for extent of occurrence based on where habitat remains.]


Countries occurrence:
New Caledonia
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:49Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Yes
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:300
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):Yes
Number of Locations:3Continuing decline in number of locations:Yes
Upper elevation limit (metres):500
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:There are no quantitative data on population size and trends for this species, but it is moderately abundant at some sites. It is expected to have undergone a substantial reduction in area of occupancy and total population size as a result of the past widespread clearance of closed forest habitat for agriculture and mining. Substantial areas of habitat have also been lost as a consequence of repeated wildfires. These impacts are ongoing.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species inhabits supralittoral vegetation, gallery forest, low elevation closed forest and maquis shrubland on rocky cuirasses surfaces. This species is diurno-nocturnal, cryptozoic, and terrestrial. It shelters beneath logs, rocks and deep within boulder beds and forages in cover or in the open at night.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The greatest threat to this species is the loss of habitat as a consequence of the rapidly expanding mining industry on the Poum (plans to remove entire top of plateau) and Dôme de Tiébaghi (plans to remove most of the plateau) massifs. Mining may affect the Iles Belep populations in the future as they are also on ultramafic cuirasse surfaces. Continued loss of habitat to wildfires is also a high risk. Introduced mammals (rodents, cats and pigs) are potential predators. On Grande Terre the high-density populations of introduced ungulates (deer and pigs, and also livestock at Rivière Nehoué) threaten habitat quality, particularly by damaging the litter layer and disrupting cover such as rocks and logs. Wasmannia auropunctata is expected to have an adverse impact in low to mid-elevation forest as this invasive ant is known to decimate lizard populations (Jourdan et al. 2000, 2001).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is protected in Province Nord under Code de l'environnement de la Province Nord (Délibération No. 306-2008/APN, 24 October 2008) and in Province Sud under Code de l'environnement de la Province Sud (Délibération No. 25-2009/APS, 20 March 2009). One of the locations where Kanakysaurus viviparus occurs (Rivière Nehoué) is administered as a recreation reserve but it receives high human use. Two areas on the upper part of Dôme de Tiébaghi are unofficially set aside as botanical reserves but to date this species has not been recorded within them. No conservation management is currently being undertaken. This species is in need of further conservation areas. Research is needed to establish population size and trends.

Citation: Whitaker, A.H. & Sadlier, R.A. 2011. Kanakysaurus viviparus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T176160A7190193. . Downloaded on 22 July 2018.
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