Marmorosphax tricolor 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Scincidae

Scientific Name: Marmorosphax tricolor (Bavay, 1869)
Common Name(s):
English Marble-throated Skink
French Scinque à gorge marbrée
Leiolopisma tricolor (Bavay, 1869)
Lygosoma tricolor Bavay, 1869
Taxonomic Notes: Recent morphometric and genetic data suggests that, as presently defined, Marmorosphax tricolor sensu Bavay, 1879 may include several cryptic species some of which have relatively confined distributions. The neotype of Marmorosphax tricolor is from Mount Aoupinié (Sadlier 1986).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2010-10-04
Assessor(s): Whitaker, A.H. & Sadlier, R.A.
Reviewer(s): Tognelli, M. & Cox, N.A.
This species is listed as Least Concern because it is very widespread, and is generally abundant wherever it occurs. In addition, it is present in many protected areas.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to New Caledonia. Marmorosphax tricolor s.l. is found throughout Grande Terre with the exception of the far northwest (northernmost location in the west is the Koniambo massif and in the east is Mount Mandjélia). It occurs at elevations of up to 1,000 m. The extent of occurrence is approximately 10,000 km2, and the area of occupancy is estimated to be 6,000 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) - km2:6000
Upper elevation limit (metres):1000
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 can occur at very high population densities in favourable habitats. It is presumed to have suffered a substantial reduction in area of occupancy and hence total population size as a result of the past widespread clearance of closed forest habitat for settlement, agriculture, afforestation and mining. Substantial areas of habitat have also been lost as a consequence of repeated wildfires. These impacts are ongoing.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species inhabits closed humid forests at low to mid-elevations, montane forest and high-elevation maquis shrublands. It is diurno-nocturnal, cryptozoic; terrestrial. It shelters beneath logs, rocks and deep leaf litter, and in soil crevices. Usually, it forages in cover or in the open in low-light situations.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The greatest threats to this species are further loss, fragmentation and degradation of closed forest habitat. The likely cause of this varies across the species' range and with elevation, but includes clearance for agriculture, mining, logging and afforestation, and damage from wildfires to forest margins. These impacts will be greatest on isolated forest remnants and can, in some cases, be expected to lead to local extirpation of skinks. The effect of fire on high elevation humid maquis shrublands is also a threat. Introduced mammals (rodents, cats and pigs) are potential predators; and high-density populations of introduced ungulates (deer and pigs) threaten habitat quality, particularly by damaging the litter layer and disrupting cover (such as rocks and logs). The introduced ant Wasmannia auropunctata is expected to have an adverse impact in low to mid-elevation forest but this likely to be lower than on other lizard species.

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). It is present in most, if not all, humid forest reserves on Grande Terre. No specific conservation management is currently being undertaken for this species.

Citation: Whitaker, A.H. & Sadlier, R.A. 2011. Marmorosphax tricolor. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T176171A7191756. . Downloaded on 18 December 2017.
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