Amblysomus corriae 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Afrosoricida Chrysochloridae

Scientific Name: Amblysomus corriae
Species Authority: Thomas, 1905
Common Name(s):
English Fynbos Golden Mole
Taxonomic Notes: Includes populations previously treated as a subspecies of Amblysomus iris (A. i. corriae), as well as a subspecies of A. hottentotus (A. h. devilliersi), see Meester et al. (1986: 23). Bronner (1996) showed that iris represents only a subspecies of A. hottentotus, and elevated corriae to species rank to include devilliersi. Includes two subspecies: A. c. corriae and A. c. devilliersi (Bronner 1995, 2013).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2014-01-21
Assessor(s): Bronner, G. & Mynhardt, S.
Reviewer(s): Taylor, A.

This species has a large extent of occurrence (>20,000 km2), but being confirmed at only 16 locations it has an area of occupancy <500 km2 (assuming a grid cell area of 16 km2), which meets the requirements under criterion B for Endangered. Although it may be declining at some locations, the population is not severely fragmented, and no extreme fluctuations are inferred or projected. Widespread habitat alteration, degradation and loss means it is re-assessed as Near Threatened as it almost qualifies for a threatened listing under criterion B2ab(iii).

Previously published Red List assessments:
2008 Near Threatened (NT)
2006 Near Threatened (NT)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is endemic to South Africa. It is found in the Western Cape Province, from Groot Winterhoek Wilderness Area (near Porterville) in the north, southeastwards along the southern Cape mountains to Hawequas Forest and Limietberg Mountains (near Worcester), and then westwards through Paarl and Stellenbosch to the coastal plain and slopes of the Langeberg mountains in the Riversdale district, then northeastwards along the coastal plain and slopes of the Outeniqua, Kouga and Baviaanskloof mountain ranges from the vicinity of George to Humansdorp (Eastern Cape). In the southern parts of the Western Cape it appears to be confined to higher-altitude, montane fynbos habitats. Does not cross the Cape Flats, where the Cape Golden Mole (Chrysochloris asiatica) is common, but coexists with C. asiatica in Stellenbosch and Paarl (Bronner 2013).
Countries occurrence:
South Africa (Eastern Cape Province, Western Cape)
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2: 256
Number of Locations: 16
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Common throughout its range, but restricted to friable soils supporting a dense invertebrate fauna; less common in rocky mountainous habitats, where it’s occurrence is seemingly restricted to patches of friable soils.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No
All individuals in one subpopulation: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Sandy soils and soft loams in Mountain Fynbos, Grassy Fynbos and Renosterveld of South West Cape. Also in Afromontane forest and southern African moist savanna along the southern Cape coast. Coexists with Chrysochloris asiatica in Stellenbosch, but favours richer and wetter soils (Broom 1907). Exists in broad sympatry with Chlorotalpa duthieae along the southern Cape coast, but trapping data suggest they select different micro habitats, A. corriae preferring forest fringes and associated fynbos, and C. duthieae preferring deeper forest. Thrives in gardens, cultivated lands, golf courses and livestock paddocks. Present also in exotic plantations, but apparently at lower densities (Bronner 2013).
Systems: Terrestrial
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Yes

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

Widespread habitat alteration, degradation and loss has occurred historically throughout the range of this species, as a result of agriculture, forestry and urbanization, but it appears to adapt well to transformed habitats providing that the intensity of disturbance is not too severe. Current threats are habitat alteration, degradation and loss in preferred habitat areas along the southeastern coast of Western Cape owing to tourism developments and increasingly intensive agricultural practices, and climate change, which could lead to a decline in suitable habitat at some locations, and the fragmentation of some subpopulations. More localized threats include: poisoning and persecution by gardeners, greenkeepers, nurserymen and specialized (small-scale) agricultural concerns; and predation by domestic dogs and cats.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

No species-specific conservation actions are necessary. A. c. corriae occurs in protected areas, including Garden Route National Park (incorporating the Wilderness National Park, Tsitsikamma National Park), Diepwalle Forest Reserve, Keurboomsrivier Nature Reserve, Kluitjieskraal Nature Reserve, Ruitersbos State Forest, Saasveld State Forest and the Bergplaas Nature Reserve. A. c. devilliersi recorded from the Jonkershoek Conservation Area (Stellenbosch), Grootwinterhoek Wilderness Area (Porterville), Limietberg Nature Reserve, Limietberg Nature Reserve and Hawequas State Forest (Worcester) and the Boosmansbos Wilderness Area (Swellendam), Grootvadersbosch Forest Reserve (Heidelberg) and Garcia State Forest (Riversdale). It probably occurs more widely in other conservation areas proclaimed for the preservation of fynbos.

Citation: Bronner, G. & Mynhardt, S. 2015. Amblysomus corriae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T62006A21284863. . Downloaded on 25 November 2015.
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