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Melanopsis etrusca

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA MOLLUSCA GASTROPODA SORBEOCONCHA MELANOPSIDAE

Scientific Name: Melanopsis etrusca
Species Authority: Brot, 1862
Taxonomic Notes:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B2ab(ii,iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2010-01-26
Assessor(s): Cianfanelli, S.
Reviewer(s): Aldridge, D., von Proschwitz, T., Seddon, M.B. & Cuttelod, A.
Justification:
Melanopsis etrusca occurs in thermal springs in a small area of Italy. Its area of occupancy is estimated to be 400 km².  In the past three sites have been lost due to habitat modifications, and at present another site is being drained, with consequent loss of the sub-population, which was abundant at this site. Enforcement of the laws protecting the species are urgently needed in order to prevent further losses.

The species was originally listed as Vulnerable, based on the restricted range and exploitation of these sites. However, due to the loss of the latest sub-population and the draining of some sites, the specie sis now considered to be Endangered (EN) B2ab(ii,iii).
History:
2000 Vulnerable

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:

Melanopsis etrusca  is endemic to southern Tuscany (Italy) where it lives in a small areas of thermal springs.  The range has been declining over the last few decades and now is only known from 4 locations all with multiple springs.

Countries:
Native:
Italy (Italy (mainland))
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The loss of recent subpopulations means that the species has a declining population (Cianfanelli pers. comm. 2010).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The species is restricted to thermal springs.
Systems: Freshwater

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: No known trade in this species.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The site at Poggetti Vecchi (Grosseto), inside the Ceccarelli’s Farm, represents one out of seven last sites where the mollusc is still alive, and here the species is currently threatened with extinction, as water was temporary removed from the pool in which most of the population lived. This operation, started in September 2009 and still in progress, has caused the death of thousands of individuals. Today the population, even if seriously compromised, is still present in the near pool but Farm’s owner is working with the aim to empty temporarily all the wet area. This will lead to the extinction of the sub-population.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This is a protected species in Tuscany and it has been listed in Annexes A (both natural and semi-natural habitats and also animal and vegetables species of regional interest, whose preservation can ask for the designation of SIR) and B (protected animal species) of the Tuscany Regional Law 56/2000. It is also in the Tuscany Naturalistic Repertoire (Re.Na.To), originally listed as a “Vulnerable” species and, since 2008, as an “Endangered” species.

Citation: Cianfanelli, S. 2010. Melanopsis etrusca. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 24 July 2014.
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