Cremnomys elvira 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Muridae

Scientific Name: Cremnomys elvira (Ellerman, 1946)
Common Name(s):
English Large Rock-rat, Elvira Rat
Rattus elvira Ellerman, 1947

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-04-19
Assessor(s): Molur, S. & Kennerley, R.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G.
Contributor(s): Kumar, B. & Nameer, P.O.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Laginha Pinto Correia, D.
Listed as Critically Endangered because its extent of occurrence is less than 100 km² and its area of occupancy is probably less than 10 km², all individuals are in a single location, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat. Surveys by government agencies have not revealed the presence of this species in other adjacent localities (Molur et al. 2005). Recent surveys located the species in 2013 to 2014 in the Shervaroy hills (Kumar 2015). 

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is known only from its type locality of Kurumbapatti, Salem District, in the Eastern Ghats, Tamil Nadu. The species had not been reported from this location or from any other location since its description until recently a team of researchers found two small populations from the type locality at elevations between 230 to 380 m Asl (Brawin Kumar pers. comm.), however, they failed to detect it elsewhere despite conducting surveys across the entire Shervaroys (Kumar 2015). More surveys are necessary in the rocky areas around the Shervaroys north, Danishpet, and the Theerthamalai, Gingee and few other selected rocky areas (Kumar 2015).
Countries occurrence:
India (Tamil Nadu)
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:0-10Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Yes
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:0-100
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):Yes
Number of Locations:1
Lower elevation limit (metres):150
Upper elevation limit (metres):250
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:There is no population information available for this species, though it is presumed the population size is very small, because in a recent survey only 12 adults were recorded during four months of survey between September and December 2014 (Kumar 2015).
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It is a nocturnal and fossorial species, which occurs in tropical dry deciduous scrub forest, where it is seen in rocky areas (Molur et al. 2005). In a recent survey, populations of C. elvira were found in rocky habitat living in rocky clifts and the gaps between rocks, which were surrounded by sparse grass, herbs and tall trees (Kumar 2015).
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): There has been qualitative and quantitative decline in habitat condition at the rate of 20 to 50% during the past 10 years and a predicted rate of less than 20% in the next 20 years due to expansion of human settlements, tree felling for fuel wood collection, and changes in land use patterns (Molur et al. 2005). The mining and dumping of debris in the foothills of small hillocks in the reserve forest boundary might cause severe damage to the habitat, as well as uncontrolled grazing in the rocky areas which might also have a negative impact on the habitat (Brawin Kumar pers. comms., Kumar 2015).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is listed in the Schedule V (considered as vermin) of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. It is not known from any protected areas (Molur et al. 2005). There are no conservation actions on the ground. Immediate conservation actions are necessary to save the rocky habitat, and the site should be declared a Wildlife Sanctuary. The site and reserved forest should be protected as a "Safe zone" without any illegal activities such as mining (Kumar 2015). Research into the population structure, demography, and year-round monitoring is necessary. Research to understand the home range and ecology is in progress. Also the details of the habitat, site, and species must be included the Salem Forest Department action plans and local people and forest officials to undertake regular monitoring. This species is highly recommended for an urgent ex situ programme for insurance purposes (Molur et al. 2005).

Citation: Molur, S. & Kennerley, R. 2016. Cremnomys elvira. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T5514A22417451. . Downloaded on 19 June 2018.
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