Engaeus martigener 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Malacostraca Decapoda Parastacidae

Scientific Name: Engaeus martigener Horwitz, 1990
Common Name(s):
English Furneaux Burrowing Crayfish

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2010-06-01
Assessor(s): Doran, N. & Horwitz, P.
Reviewer(s): Collen, B. & Richman, N.
Contributor(s): Livingston, F., Soulsby, A.-M., Batchelor, A., Dyer, E., Whitton, F., Milligan, H.T., Smith, J., Lutz, M.L., De Silva, R., McGuinness, S., Kasthala, G., Jopling, B., Sullivan, K. & Cryer, G.
Engaeus martigener has been assessed as Endangered using criteria B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii). This species has an estimated extent of occurrence of on 15.1 km², an area of occupancy (AOO) of 0.18 km² and is known from three locations (Mount Strzelecki, Darling Ranges and Mount Munro) on two islands. This species is threatened by bush fires and drought. Increased periods of drought have caused much of its habitat to dry up, reducing habitat quality while increasing the risk severe bush fires. A detailed assessment of its geographic distribution, population trends and the quantity, quality and long-term security of its available habitat needs to be undertaken, especially given the significant threat posed by bush fires.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to the region of Mount Strzelecki and the Darling Ranges on Flinders Island in the Bass Strait, as well as the higher gullies of Mount Munro on Cape Barren Island, Australia (Horwitz 1990, N. Doran pers. comm. 2009). It has an estimated distribution of 15.1 km2 (Richardson et al. 2004), and an estimated area of occupancy of 0.18 km2 (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2008). Though, these figures are rough estimates, as the exact distributional boundaries for the species are poorly known and need to be better surveyed (N. Doran pers. comm. 2009).
Countries occurrence:
Australia (Tasmania)
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:0.18
Number of Locations:3
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:There is insufficient population data available for this species, although it can be very locally abundant within its range (N. Doran pers. comm. 2009).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species is most commonly found in boggy habitats and small clear water creeks in higher altitude temperate wet fern gullies (Horwitz 1990). More recently it has also been found in poorly drained mossy tea-tree bogs and small grassy spring/soak in open dry eucalyptus forests at lower altitudes (Doran 2000). The burrows often have more than one opening and frequently ramify beneath rotting logs or the root matting of tree ferns. The largest male found was 25.1 mm carapace length. Mature females ranged from 18.8 to 25.3 mm carapace length (Horwitz 1990).


Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is restricted in distribution to only three known, relatively high altitude, regions on Flinders Island and Cape Barren Island in the Bass Strait (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2008). The reservation status of this species is relatively high, however there are still numerous threatening processes present within its habitat (Doran 2000). The habitat for this species is considered to be susceptible to severe wildfire and subsequent habitat loss including loss of shade and moisture. Whilst the likelihood of fire has not been quantified, key habitat is identified as the most fire sensitive. High fuel levels, the existing drought conditions and the lack of access for fire control, dramatically increases the likelihood of intense wildfires (Doran 2000). Within the next ten years, the risk of fire and subsequent habitat loss and population decline can be considered high (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2008).

Broad scale habitat change and changes in weather, water and drainage patterns due to climate change could become a major issue in the future (N. Doran pers. comm. 2009). Feral pigs are a potential threat on Flinders Island, especially in areas with shallow soils where the crayfish can be readily caught (N. Doran and P. Horwitz pers. comm. 2009). Forestry and agricultural issues are currently not a major threat to this species, however this might change in the future depending upon decisions regarding such activities on the islands (Doran 2000).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is listed as 'vulnerable' under the Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act (1995) and as 'endangered' under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (1999) (Doran 2000). It is included in the objectives for fauna conservation in the Parks and Wildlife Service (2000), Strzelecki National Park Management Plan. It is also included in the Engaeus group Recovery Plan, which was adopted by both State and Federal Government (N. Doran pers. comm. 2009). This species is found within an existing national park, however it is unknown how much of its range is located within formal reserves (Doran 2000). A detailed assessment of its geographic distribution and the quantity, quality and long-term security of its available habitat needs to be undertaken, especially given the significant threat posed by bushfires (Doran 2000). Future research should also focus on establishing a broad scale audit and monitoring program across this genus and other burrowing crayfish as they are likely to be very sensitive indicators of habitat and climate change (N. Doran pers. comm. 2009).

Citation: Doran, N. & Horwitz, P. 2010. Engaeus martigener. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T7737A12845688. . Downloaded on 22 November 2017.
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