Dromiciops gliroides


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Dromiciops gliroides
Species Authority: Thomas, 1894
Common Name(s):
English Monito Del Monte
Spanish Comadrejita Enana, Llacas
French Opossum Austral
Dromiciops australis F. Philippi, 1893
Taxonomic Notes: The genus Dromiciops includes only one living species, D. gliroides (Marshall, 1978). Dromiciops is considered a living fossil form because it is the sole representative of an extinct lineage, the microbiotheres.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Diaz M. & Teta, P.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
This species is considered to be Near Threatened in light of an ongoing population decline inferred from habitat conversion to agriculture and from logging activities. Almost qualifies as threatened under criterion A. Further information is needed on the distribution, area of occupancy and effects of the numerous threats on populations of this species, as it may be more threatened than currently suspected. This species is restricted to a habitat type which is being exploited and should be monitored.
1996 Vulnerable

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Only found in southern and central Chile, to the south of Concepcion and on the island of Chiloe, and adjacent Argentina. It was recently captured in Argentina in Lake Nahuel Huapi National Park (Birney et al., in press).
Argentina; Chile
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Its population has declined over recent years. Currently, D. gliroides has been catalogued as a rare species in Chile,
due to its reduced population size. Furthermore, the high degree of fragmentation in the Maulino forest, allows to suppose that the local population of Dromiciops as well as that of the Reserva Los Ruiles and Los Queules could be in danger of extinction.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Dromiciops gliroides live in the cool, humid forests of the Chilean Andes where they inhabit thickets of Chilean Bamboo (Chusquea sp.). This nocturnal, arboreal mammal construct spherical nests of water-repellant bamboo leaves lined with moss or grass. Nests probably serve to protect the animals from the cold, but when temperatures drop during the winter and food becomes scarce, Dromiciops gliroides will hibernate. Feeds primarily on larvae and pupae of insect.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is threatened by a loss of restricted habitat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species occurs in several protected areas. More research is necessary to determine the impact of the numerous possible threats to populations - especially logging and agriculture.

Citation: Diaz M. & Teta, P. 2008. Dromiciops gliroides. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 01 September 2015.
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