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Procambarus cometes

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA ARTHROPODA MALACOSTRACA DECAPODA CAMBARIDAE

Scientific Name: Procambarus cometes
Species Authority: Fitzpatrick, 1978
Common Name(s):
English Mississippi Flatwoods Crayfish

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(i,iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2010-06-01
Assessor(s): Adams, S. & Jones, R.L.
Reviewer(s): Collen, B. & Richman, N.
Contributor(s): Livingston, F., Livingston, F., Soulsby, A.-M., Batchelor, A., Dyer, E., Whitton, F., Milligan, H.T., Smith, J., Lutz, M.L., De Silva, R., McGuinness, S., Kasthala, G., Jopling, B., Sullivan, K. & Cryer, G.
Justification:
Procambarus cometes has been assessed as Endangered B1ab(i,iii). This species has an extent of occurrence of less than 5,000 km2, and is found in less than five locations. Furthermore, it is impacted by habitat modification, and has been extirpated from the type locality, due to habitat modification. It is has experienced past declines due to the application of pesticides, as it was considered a pest species due to problems it caused to crops. Current threats include ongoing urbanization, in particular expansion of the city Starkville, and the threat from intensive crop farming, which occurs across its range. Further research is required to determine the population status of this species, as well as its current distribution and the how the current threats across its distribution are impacting upon it.
History:
1996 Vulnerable

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is located in Lowndes and Oktibbeha counties, Mississippi (Fetzner 2008), currently found in less than five locations (S. Adams pers. comm. 2010). This species has been extirpated from the type locality, as the habitat no longer exists due to habitat modification  (B. Jones pers. comm. 2009). This species has an approximate distribution of 2,382 km2.
Countries:
Native:
United States (Mississippi)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Current records for this species are from 1968 and 1969 taken from 3 localities; though few samples were collected so it is difficult to specify population numbers (S. Adams pers. comm. 2009.). Furthermore, this species is considered rare and of special concern (Fitzpatrick 1996).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is found in relatively simple burrows in flatwoods or meadows in rich, well-drained soils with bedrock approximately seven meters below the surface. The species is a primary burrower (NatureServe 2009).
Systems: Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): It has been extirpated from the type locality, due to habitat modification (urbanization). Poison was historically used to control the numbers of this species, as it was considered a pest species due to problems it caused to crops (Lyle 1937); it is uncertain whether farmers in the region still use pesticides to eliminate the crayfish from farmland (S. Adams pers. comm. 2010). This species is likely to still be threatened by urbanization due to the expansion of Starkville (a city in Oktibbeha county), and from modern agricultural practices such as row crop farming throughout its range (S. Adams pers. comm. 2010); however this has not been extensively looked in to.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species has been given a Global Heritage Status Rank of G1 NatureServe and assessed as 'endangered' by the American Fisheries Society (Taylor et al. 2007, NatureServe 2009). Further research is required to determine the population status of this species, as well as its current distribution and threats impacting upon it.

Citation: Adams, S. & Jones, R.L. 2010. Procambarus cometes. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 22 December 2014.
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