Karstama balicum 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Malacostraca Decapoda Sesarmidae

Scientific Name: Karstama balicum (Ng, 2002)
Common Name(s):
English Giri Putri Cave Crab
Sesarmoides balicum Ng, 2002 [orth. error]
Sesarmoides balicus Ng, 2002
Taxonomic Source(s): Davie, P. 2009. Karstarma balicum (Ng, 2002). Accessed through: World Register of Marine Species. Available at: (Accessed: 26 January 2018).
Taxonomic Notes: The species was identified by Ng (2002) after it was realized that the type series of crabs described as K. emdi (Ng and Whitten 1995) contained this additional species. The species was reassigned from Sesarmoides to Karstama by Davie and Ng (2007).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(ii,iii,iv,v)+2ab(ii,iii,iv,v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2013-08-20
Assessor(s): Whitten, T. & Ng Kee Lin, P.
Reviewer(s): Yeo, D. & Cumberlidge, N.
This species meets the criteria for listing as Critically Endangered because its area of occupancy (AOO) is about 0.003 km², only one locality is known, and the habitat is imminently threatened by uncontrolled and increasing tourism/religious practices.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is known from only a single cave on the east coast of Nusa Penida: Giri Putri Cave both in Karangsari hamlet, Suana Village at 8° 42' 31.80"S, 115° 35' 10.00"E at 34 m asl. This cave is relatively simple and 276 m long.  

It may also be present in the adjacent small cave, Gua Paon, where K. emdi is also found. 

A pamphlet was distributed across the island's villages in 2012 asking villagers to contact a local conservation non-Government organisation (NGO) to report any other sites, but there were no reports.
Countries occurrence:
Indonesia (Bali)
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:0.003Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Yes
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:0.03
Number of Locations:1Continuing decline in number of locations:Yes
Lower elevation limit (metres):30
Upper elevation limit (metres):40
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:No estimate of the population size has been made.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This crab is found on the muddy floor and lower walls of the cave. It shelters both in small (~7 cm diameter) drip pools in the floor when these are wet, or in clefts in the wall. 

It has relatively long legs, a common morphological adaptation for living in caves. The cave floor is the path used by the many pilgrims and worshippers at the cave's temples.
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species is not utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The primary threat to this crab is the increasing use of the cave by pilgrims and worshippers at Giri Putri. In 1994 when the crab was first collected the infrastructure was minimal, but now there are walkways and seating across part of the cave floor, and electric lights. Six visits since the original discovery have noted a decline in the abundance of the crab, although some of that may have been caused by visits being undertaken in relatively dry periods when free water on the floor of the cave was less available. 

It is possible that the crabs benefit from food offerings left and spilled on the ground but this is not yet confirmed.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no conservation actions in place. The most effective feasible action is the cooperation of the temple authorities to allow a degree of precautionary management and monitoring of crab numbers and ecology/behaviour.

Citation: Whitten, T. & Ng Kee Lin, P. 2015. Karstama balicum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T62082915A79816458. . Downloaded on 25 September 2018.
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