Acalypha cupricola 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Malpighiales Euphorbiaceae

Scientific Name: Acalypha cupricola Robyns ex G.A. Levin

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2010-03-01
Assessor(s): Meersseman, A., Faucon, M.-P., Meerts, P., Mahy, G., Malaisse, F. & Ngongo Luhembwe, M.
Reviewer(s): Stévart, T., Dessein, S., Ewango, C. & Gereau, R.
Considering the Katangese populations known so far for this species, the extent of occurrence (EOO) is estimated to be 12,923 km², and the area of occupancy (AOO) is estimated to 200 km². The species has been found at 110 sites representing more than 10 locations. Acalypha cupricola is strictly endemic to copper-rich soil (i.e., it is an absolute metallophyte) in Katanga, Democratic Republic of Congo. Its habitat is restricted to steppic savanna in copper outcrops, which is being destroyed by surface mining. The population is not considered to be severely fragmented, but there is projected continuing decline of area of occupancy, area, extent and quality of habitat, of number of subpopulations and of number of mature individuals. Based on these observations, this species is listed as Near Threatened.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to the Katangan copperbelt area in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Considering the Katangese populations known so far, the EOO for this species is estimated to be 12,923 km², but the AOO is estimated to be 200 km². Currently it is known from 110 sites that represent more than 10 but less than 20 locations.
Countries occurrence:
Congo, The Democratic Republic of the
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:200Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Yes
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:12923
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):Yes
Number of Locations:19Continuing decline in number of locations:Yes
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The size of subpopulations is often small (less than 100 individuals).
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Yes
Population severely fragmented:No
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This plant is strictly endemic to copper-rich soil (i.e., it is an absolute metallophyte). Its natural habitat is restricted to steppe savanna, growing in copper outcrops. This species is also able to colonise secondary metalliferous habitat such as substrate (often mine debris) disturbed by the mining industry (Faucon et al. 2010).

In the Katangan Copper Belt area, mineralised rocks appear as rounded hills, typically a few tenths of meters above the level of the surrounding non-mineralised areas, and most are typically a few tenths of hectares in area, rarely exceeding 1 km² (Faucon et al. 2010). The distance between nearby hills varies from less than a few hundred meters to more than 20 km (Faucon et al. 2010).
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species not utilized, but it can be exploited in environmental technologies (e.g., example phytostabilization, phytoremediation, and phytomining). The ability of metallophytes to tolerate extreme metal concentrations commends them for re-vegetation of mines and metal-contaminated sites.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threat to this species is habitat loss and degradation caused by mining activities, particularly by extraction surface mining. Low densities, restricted range, and limited dispersal abilities make this species vulnerable to these activities.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No conservation measures are in place for this species. It is not protected by current national legislation.

Citation: Meersseman, A., Faucon, M.-P., Meerts, P., Mahy, G., Malaisse, F. & Ngongo Luhembwe, M. 2014. Acalypha cupricola. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T195372A2381261. . Downloaded on 22 May 2018.
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