Acomys russatus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Muridae

Scientific Name: Acomys russatus (Wagner, 1840)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Golden Spiny Mouse
Acomys lewisi Atallah, 1967

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-02-02
Assessor(s): Shenbrot, G.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G.
Contributor(s): Amr, Z.S.S. & Scott, D.
The species is widespread and common, and is not known to face any major threat at present. Subspecies lewisi has a very narrow habitat tolerance and a small range, so it would probably qualify as threatened if assessed separately.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:The type locality is located within a major Egyptian Military base (Wadi Hof), but there is no current information about the species from this area. Beer Kasib is the only other known locality in Egypt outside of the Sinai, but it no longer occurs here. The species was widespread and common in Egypt up to 50 years ago. It has either been extirpated or is very close to extirpation within much of Egypt. It is still common on the Sinai Peninsula (e.g., at St. Catherine's) and in the Middle East (Jordan, Israel, Saudi Arabia and northern Yemen). This species occurs up to 2,000 m asl. The range of the form A. russatus lewisi may extend into Syria but may be a separate species.
Countries occurrence:
Egypt (Sinai); Israel; Jordan; Saudi Arabia; Yemen
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species was once very common in Egypt but has declined by more than 90% in the last 50 years. It is still common elsewhere in its range (e.g. Jordan) (Amr 2000).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It occurred strictly in rocky habitats, at the edges of wadis, at the base of jebels, or on mountain summits. This is a diurnal, insectivorous species.
Generation Length (years):1-2

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The reasons for the species' decline in Egypt are unknown. Elsewhere in its range it is not considered to be seriously threatened. The golden spiny mouse has become a pest in agricultural fields that use drip irrigation as they eat seeds and destroy certain crops. They are sometimes the focus of public health concerns because flea populations on these mice may host Rickettsia, the organism which causes typhus.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species is found in many protected areas. A survey on the status of this species in the eastern desert of Egypt and in Wadi Hof is needed.

Citation: Shenbrot, G. 2016. Acomys russatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T273A22452593. . Downloaded on 20 June 2018.
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