Encephalartos sclavoi


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Encephalartos sclavoi
Species Authority: De Luca, D.W.Stev. & A.Moretti
Common Name/s:
English Sclavo's Cycad
Encephalartos sp. A
Taxonomic Notes: Was described as Encephalartos sp. A in the Flora of Tropical East Africa.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(iii,v)+2ab(iii,v); D ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-10-31
Assessor/s: Eastern Arc Mountains & Coastal Forests CEPF Plant Assessment Project and Donaldson, J.S.
Reviewer/s: Beentje, H., Gereau, R., Kabuye, C., Kalema, J., Luke, Q., Lyaruu, H., Maunder, M., Mwachala, G., Ndangalasi, H., Njau, F. & Schatz, G. (East African Plants Red List Authority) and Bösenberg, J.D. & Agenbag, L. (Cycad Red List Authority)
This species has a very small area of occupancy, is known from a single location and there is continuing decline due to loss in the extent and quality of habitat and decline in the population due to collection by traditional healers and by cycad collectors. The listing of Critically Endangered is also based on the very small population size of less than 50 mature plants.
2003 Vulnerable (IUCN 2003)
2003 Vulnerable
1997 Rare (Walter and Gillett 1998)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Known only from the type locality ("Gologolo") within Shume Magamba Forest Reserve in the western Usambara Mountains, Tanga district of northeastern Tanzania. Occurs at 1,800 to 2,100 m.
Tanzania, United Republic of
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population size was originally estimated as 5,000-6,000 mature individuals. Recent reports (e.g. S. Trollip pers. comm. 2008) indicate that populations are declining and plants are difficult to find. It is now estimated that the population is very small, probably less than 50 mature individuals. Although there are apparently five or six subpopulations  occurring along a mountain ridge, the area is more or less contiguous and cannot be regarded as six locations, but is regarded as a single location because of the nature of the threats.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:  Grows on steep, relatively dry, south facing rocky slopes in grassland and on rocky outcrops surrounded by montane forest. Occurs between rocks on sheer precipitous granite and gneiss promontories.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The seeds are harvested for medicinal purposes by traditional healers and there is also collecting by cycad poachers. The area is in a prime forestry and agricultural area, so the habitat is already and is likely to continue being impacted. The area, because of its elevation has a mild climate and is considered an ideal place to live. So increases in human settlement and further changes in land use are likely. Natural and man made fires destroy seed and seedlings.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Occurs in the Shume Magamba Forest Reserve.

Listed in CITES Appendix I.
Citation: Eastern Arc Mountains & Coastal Forests CEPF Plant Assessment Project and Donaldson, J.S. 2010. Encephalartos sclavoi. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <>. Downloaded on 20 April 2014.
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