Ameles fasciipennis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Insecta Mantodea Mantidae

Scientific Name: Ameles fasciipennis Kaltenbach, 1963
Common Name(s):
English Spined Dwarf Mantis

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct) D ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2014-03-19
Assessor(s): Battiston, R.
Reviewer(s): Bushell, M., Bazelet, C. & Hochkirch, A.
A. fasciipennis has been recorded only once, probably in 1871 (the label is ambiguous, but the date is likely to be correct), with only a single specimen collected, and never collected or reported again. The taxonomy of the genus Ameles is at the present time rather confusing and further analysis should be done to confirm the validity of this species; however, the characters used in the original description make this species appear valid and well separated from the others. The surroundings of Tolentino, the type locality, have been investigated in three different years by the assessor and occasionally by other specialists. Other species of mantids have been collected in the surroundings some very close to this species (e.g. A. decolor and A. spallanzania) and this demonstrates that some places near Tolentino are still suitable for mantids of this kind, but A. fasciipennis has never been found again. The area is not easy to be investigated in detail and this genus of mantids is very cryptic and not easily collected, so the possibility exists that this species still survives somewhere in central Italy and should not be considered extinct. However, if this is true it survives in very low numbers because central Italy has been frequently investigated by many different entomologists in the last century and this species have never been reported. Because this species has been under investigation since 1963 and many attempts to find it and to study its taxonomy have been made the Data Deficient category is deemed not suitable and this species should be considered as Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct). Further investigations are however suggested to evaluate its presence in the wild.
Date last seen: end of 19th century, probably 1871

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to Italy, the type (and only) specimen being collected from "Tolentino".
Countries occurrence:
Possibly extinct:
Italy (Italy (mainland))
Additional data:
Number of Locations:1
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Only one specimen of A. fasciipennis is known which is also the holotype.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The only known specimen is labelled as being collected from "Tolentino", a town in central Italy which now has intensive land cultivation over most of its territory. It is possible that, when this specimen was collected at the end of the 19th century, Tolentino was less intensively cultivated and a more suitable vegetation for this genus of mantids was present, such as Mediterranean vegetation and natural grassland and shrubland, but we have no detailed data on this.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is not utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threat to this species is habitat reduction since Tolentino is now located in an intensively cultivated area unsuitable for large populations of other species of mantids which can now only be found in the peripheries.  However, no real information exists on the effect this has had on A. fasciipennis due to only one specimen being known.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no living populations known.

Citation: Battiston, R. 2014. Ameles fasciipennis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T44791445A44798187. . Downloaded on 27 May 2018.
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