Melocactus violaceus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Caryophyllales Cactaceae

Scientific Name: Melocactus violaceus Pfeiff.
Taxonomic Source(s): Hunt, D., Taylor, N. and Charles, G. (compilers and editors). 2006. The New Cactus Lexicon. dh Books, Milborne Port, UK.
Taxonomic Notes: Three subspecies are recognized, the nominate form, subsp. margaritaceus N.P.Taylor and subsp. ritteri N.P.Taylor. All of the subspecies were previously assessed in 2002, the nominate and subsp. margaritaceus were assessed as Vulnerable and subsp. ritteri as Critically Endangered. None of these subspecies has been reassessed and hence they are now excluded from the Red List.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2c ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2010-08-08
Assessor(s): Braun, P., Machado, M., Taylor, N.P. & Zappi, D.
Reviewer(s): Goettsch, B.K., Superina, M. & Chanson, J.S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Goettsch, B.K.
Melocactus violaceus has a wide range, occurring along the coast of Brazil from Rio de Janeiro northwards. In total, a 70% population loss is inferred based on historical land use change for tourist development. A 30% loss or higher is estimated over the past 15 years (or three generations). The habitat quantity and quality is being reduced due to many reasons, such as tourism, agroindustry, and urbanization. Hence, this cactus is listed as Vulnerable under criterion A2c.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to Brazil, where it occurs from Rio Grande do Norte to Rio de Janeiro, at elevations from 0 to 1,100 m asl.
Countries occurrence:
Brazil (Alagoas, Bahia, Espírito Santo, Minas Gerais, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Rio Grande do Norte, Sergipe)
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):1100
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The species probably was once very abundant, but most of the subpopulations are decreasing.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This widespread humid forest (Mata atlântica/restinga) and Northern campo rupestre (cerrado) element grows between shrubs in sand of the coastal restinga, riverine sand-dunes, and similar habitats further inland.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is not utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The major threat for this species is habitat loss due to urbanization, tourism (resorts), road construction, artificial landscaping, and agro-industrial plantations of coconut, pineapple, sugar cane, eucalyptus and forestry.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species occurs within many protected areas, such as Parque Nacional do Cachimbau and Reserva Biologica do Guaribas.

Amended [top]

Amended reason: The species distribution map has been added.

Citation: Braun, P., Machado, M., Taylor, N.P. & Zappi, D. 2017. Melocactus violaceus (amended version of 2013 assessment). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T40925A121501259. . Downloaded on 20 April 2018.
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