Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Typhlopidae

Scientific Name: Xenotyphlops grandidieri
Species Authority: (Mocquard, 1905)
Typhlops grandidieri Mocquard, 1905
Taxonomic Notes: Recently-discovered specimens from Baie de Sakalava are provisionally assigned to X. grandidieri, a species previously known only from a single specimen with the type locality "Madagascar" (Glaw and Vences 2007; F. Glaw pers. comm.April 2011), on the basis that two other restricted-range species described by Mocquard have been found at the same locality, providing evidence that collections took place within or near this site (F. Glaw pers. comm. April 2011). These records were treated as belonging to X. mocquardi in Glaw and Vences (2007). Xenotyphlops mocquardi is itself likely to be a junior synonym of this species, as it falls within the range of variation observed within more recently-collected Baie de Sakalava specimens assigned to X. grandidieri (M. Vences pers. comm. January 2011; F. Glaw pers. comm. April 2011). If this is the case, this will represent a slight range extension to the south (M. Vences pers. comm. January 2011).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2011-01-26
Assessor(s): Vences, M., Raselimanana, A., Rakotondravony, H. & Glaw, F.
Reviewer(s): Bowles, P. & Cox, N.A.
Listed as Critically Endangered as the known extent of occurrence is 28 km², the area of occupancy is less than 10 km², and it occurs at a single location where it is threatened by deforestation of its dune habitat for charcoal production.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species has been found at a single site, Baie de Sakalava, in the far north of Madagascar (Megson et al. 2009), where it ranges from sea level to 50 m in elevation. It is likely to be endemic to a tiny area in the north of the island, around Antsiranana (M. Vences pers. comm. January 2011). Its extent of occurrence may be as low as 28 km².
Countries occurrence:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2: 1-9
Number of Locations: 1
Upper elevation limit (metres): 50
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


It is a common species. If the species occurs within forest in Forêt d'Orangea, the population may be declining as a result of loss and degradation of this habitat; however it is unclear what degree of disturbance this snake can tolerate.

Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:

This burrowing snake has been found in forested or shrubby dunes close to the coast, where it has been reported from sandy soil (F. Glaw pers. comm. May 2011). It is likely that it occurs within the adjacent Forêt d'Orangea (F. Glaw pers. comm. May 2011), which is characterized by humid lowland forest.

Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade:

This species is not traded or used.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This snake is threatened by severe habitat loss resulting from deforestation of the dune habitat for charcoal production, as it is not believed to occur in unforested areas. It is potentially threatened by the development of mining (e.g. for sand) in the area.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species does not benefit from any conservation measures. It is not known from any protected areas. This snake's forested dune habitat should be preserved as a matter of urgency to limit the impacts of human activities. Research is needed to clarify the taxonomy of this and X. mocquardi, to investigate population trends and to establish whether it occurs more widely than is presently known.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability: Suitable  
3. Shrubland -> 3.6. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Moist
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
13. Marine Coastal/Supratidal -> 13.3. Marine Coastal/Supratidal - Coastal Sand Dunes
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection
1. Land/water protection -> 1.2. Resource & habitat protection

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
  Action Recovery plan:No
  Systematic monitoring scheme:No
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over part of range
  Occur in at least one PA:No
  Area based regional management plan:No
In-Place Species Management
  Harvest management plan:No
  Successfully reintroduced or introduced beningly:No
  Subject to ex-situ conservation:No
In-Place Education
  Subject to recent education and awareness programmes:No
  Included in international legislation:No
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:No
3. Energy production & mining -> 3.2. Mining & quarrying
♦ timing: Future ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Very Rapid Declines ⇒ Impact score: Medium Impact: 6 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

5. Biological resource use -> 5.3. Logging & wood harvesting -> 5.3.3. Unintentional effects: (subsistence/small scale)
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Unknown ⇒ Impact score: Unknown 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion

1. Research -> 1.1. Taxonomy
1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends

Bibliography [top]

IUCN. 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2011.2). Available at: (Accessed: 10 November 2011).

Megson, S., Mitchell, P., Köhler, J., Marsh, C., Franzen, M., Glaw, F. and D'Cruze, N.C. 2009. A comprehensive survey of amphibians and reptiles in the extreme north of Madagascar. Herpetology Notes 2: 31-44.

Citation: Vences, M., Raselimanana, A., Rakotondravony, H. & Glaw, F. 2011. Xenotyphlops grandidieri. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T172958A6948452. . Downloaded on 13 October 2015.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided