Atlantoxerus getulus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Atlantoxerus getulus
Species Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Common Name(s):
English Barbary Ground Squirrel

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Aulagnier, S.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Temple, H. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
This is a widespread species, occurs in a variety of habitats (including anthropogenically disturbed habitats), and common wherever it occurs. Introduced outside of its range, where it has become a pest species. No major threats, and safely considered Least Concern.
2004 Least Concern

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Endemic to the most western part of North Africa, in Western Sahara, Morocco and a small area of northwestern Algeria (Ksours Mountains). Ranges from the coastal zone up to 4,165 m mainly in the Middle and High Atlas south to Agadir, in the Anti Atlas and in the northern edge of the western Sahara, south to Sequiat el Hamra. Introduced to Fuenteventura (Canary Islands) in 1965.
Algeria; Morocco; Western Sahara
Spain (Canary Is.)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Abundant in the lower slopes and valleys, they are still very common up to 2,000 m in the Grand Atlas; above this, densities decrease with increasing altitude. Densities also decrease dramatically in the eastern part of the range. Some local patches can be numerous in desert region. Population fluctuations are suspected to occur.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Inhabit stony regions and open habitats from mountain slopes to desert. Avoiding bare areas and forests, they are common in open country with scattered trees and bushes of Juniper (Juniperus spp.), Thuya (Tetraclinis articulata) and Argan (Argania spinosa). Shelter in burrows excavated under rocks or among stones in screes consolidated by vegetation. Also present in various agricultural habitats, favoured by stone walls where they can seek refuge. Even though they require permanent water in the south, they never enter irrigated fields. Diurnal, and social, with the most simple family unit composed of a single female with her young. Litter size: at least four. Capable of producing two litters per year.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats. Widespread within its range, and uses poor agricultural habitats. On Fuenteventura (where they are introduced), they are regarded as a pest; it is forbidden to transport animals from one island to another as they prey on the endemic invertebrates, such as snails.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Occurs in Toubkal National Park in Morocco and probably in other protected areas, too.

Citation: Aulagnier, S. 2008. Atlantoxerus getulus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <>. Downloaded on 01 April 2015.
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