Dorcatragus megalotis 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Cetartiodactyla Bovidae

Scientific Name: Dorcatragus megalotis
Species Authority: (Menges, 1894)
Common Name(s):
English Beira, Beira Antelope

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable C1 ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Heckel, J.-O., Rayaleh, H.A., Wilhelmi, F. & Hammer, S.
Reviewer(s): Mallon, D.P. & Chardonnet, P. (Antelope Red List Authority)
Listed as Vulnerable as the population is <10,000 mature individuals and is estimated to decline by at least 10% over three generations (16.5 years) as a result of drought, overgrazing by domestic livestock and some hunting.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2007 Vulnerable (VU)
1996 Vulnerable (VU)
1994 Insufficiently Known (K)
1990 Insufficiently Known (K)
1988 Insufficiently Known (K)
1986 Insufficiently Known (K)
1965 Status inadequately known-survey required or data sought

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Endemic to northeast Africa. Most of the distribution area lies in northern Somalia [Somaliland], from the Nogaal Valley northwards. Full details of the distribution are unclear, but from historical and recent information the remaining core areas of the population are: Asse hills-Lahan Sheik, Garoowe area (Bur Cobohille), Wagar, Buuraha and Golis mountains, Araweina, Ali Haidh and Guban region. Between these locations, occasional sightings have been reported (Moustapha Elmi 1992, Giotto et al. in press).

The species’ existence in Djibouti was only confirmed in 1993, when they were observed on hillsides at two sites in the southeast, close to the borders with Somalia and Ethiopia (Künzel and Künzel 1998). Recent surveys have shown that the area of distribution in Djibouti is about 250 km² and located in the mountainous Ali Sabieh - Arrey - Assamo region (Künzel et al. 2000, Laurent et al. 2001, Heckel et al. 2004).

In Ethiopia, the species is known from the Marmar mountains along the border with north-west Somalia (Bolton 1973). No recent information is available on its status in this part of the country, where large numbers of armed pastoralists and their livestock now reside. There is no evidence of their occurrence in the Ogaden region (Wilhelmi 1997, Wilhelmi et al. 2006).
Countries occurrence:
Ethiopia; Somalia
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: In the 1980s it still occupied large parts of its historical range, but in greatly reduced numbers. East (1999) estimated the population at 7,000 [though fewer mature individuals] based on the assumption that a population density of 0.2 /km² applied throughout the species’ range, and that its area of occupancy is about 35,000 km². Most occur in northern Somalia, which has been relatively unaffected by the civil/military conflicts in the rest of the country. Its numbers may be decreasing in some parts of its range where settlement is expanding and livestock densities are high, but its populations are probably stable in areas with few settlements.

In Djibouti, the total population has been estimated at between 50 and 150 individuals (Künzel and Künzel 1998, Laurent et al. 2001, Heckel et al. 2004). In Djibouti, Beira are restricted to a limited area and likely decreasing in number due to desertification by overgrazing and disturbance from an incoming population of refugees. In Somalia, animals underwent a marked decline in number during the 1975 drought (Simonetta 1988).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Beira frequent rocky or stony hillsides, rarely steep slopes, where the dominant vegetation is a woody steppe of mixed Acacia scrub (Giotto et al. in press).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Drought, habitat deterioration as a result of overgrazing by domestic livestock, uncontrolled hunting and cutting of woodland and scrub for charcoal exports to the Gulf area (Moustapha Elmi 1992, East 1999). However, the Beira’s small size, wariness, and the vegetated rocky habitat it prefers have apparently enabled it to avoid heavy hunting pressure.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no protected areas within beira range or active in-situ conservation programmes for the species. There is a successful captive- breeding population at Al Wabra, Qatar.

Citation: Heckel, J.-O., Rayaleh, H.A., Wilhelmi, F. & Hammer, S. 2008. Dorcatragus megalotis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T6793A12806636. . Downloaded on 28 May 2016.
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