Scolecomorphus uluguruensis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Gymnophiona Scolecomorphidae

Scientific Name: Scolecomorphus uluguruensis Barbour & Loveridge, 1928
Common Name(s):
English Nyingwa Caecilian, Uluguru Black Caecilian
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2013. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 5.6 (9 January 2013). Electronic Database. American Museum of Natural History, New York, USA. Available at:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-12-10
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Stuart, S.N.
Contributor(s): Gower, D.J., Measey, J., Howell, K. & Loader, S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Luedtke, J.
Listed as Endangered due to its extent of occurrence of 522 km2 which, although its range is poorly known, is unlikely to be larger since it is thought to be endemic to the Uluguru Mountains. Ongoing habitat loss within its range means that the species occurs in fewer than five threat-defined locations.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is known from the Uluguru Mountains of Tanzania between the altitudes of 1,800-2,050 m asl. The limits of its range are unknown, but the Eastern Arc Mountains are relatively well-sampled and no specimens have been recorded elsewhere; furthermore, patterns of endemism in the Ulugurus indicate most species are found only in this massif, suggesting that it is unlikely to occur more widely (S. Loader pers. comm. December 2015). Using its known range as a proxy, its estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) is 522 km2.
Countries occurrence:
Tanzania, United Republic of
Additional data:
Number of Locations:1-4
Lower elevation limit (metres):1800
Upper elevation limit (metres):2050
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Historically, it was recorded as locally abundant (Barbour and Loveridge 1928). The species has been collected since Loveridge's first collection, including 1999-2000 (Doggart et al. 2000), 2001-2003 (Ngalason, 2011), and 2013 (Loader pers. comm. December 2015).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It is a soil-dwelling species found in montane forest. It probably also survives in secondary habitat such as small-holder agricultural allotments (D. Gower and S. Loader pers. comm. December 2015). It is viviparous (Parker and Dunn 1964) and does not depend on water bodies for reproduction.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: There are no records of this species being utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

There are no known major threats, but assuming that soil moisture and temperature maintained by vegetation is important for the species, possible threats include habitat disturbance and conversion caused by deforestation and agricultural intensification (including the application of agricultural herbicides and pesticides) (D. Gower and S. Loader pers. comm. December 2015). It is not known to what extent these activities may threaten this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions
It occurs in the Uluguru Nature Reserve, but small-holder agriculture is encroaching on the protected forest (Burgess et al. 2002).

Conservation Needed
Increased protection of this reserve and possibly the rest of the species' habitat is required.

Research Needed
Further research is needed on its population status and trends, life history and ecology, the effect of ongoing threats on the species, and necessary conservation actions.

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. 2016. Scolecomorphus uluguruensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T59652A16944643. . Downloaded on 23 April 2018.
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