Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Mollusca Gastropoda Neogastropoda Conidae

Scientific Name: Conus saragasae
Species Authority: Rolán, 1986

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2011-10-28
Assessor(s): Tenorio, M.J.
Reviewer(s): Monnier, E. & Seddon, M.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Seddon, M. & Peters, H.
This species is endemic to the Cape Verde Islands where it is restricted to the island of São Vicente and the neighbouring island of Santa Luzia.  The site on Santa Luzia is protected, however the populations on Sao Vincente are considered to be more threatened and as they are restricted in their range the species is assessed as Near Threatened.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is endemic to the Cape Verde Islands where it is found off the extreme west coast of São Vicente between Calhau and Baía de Saragassa for a distance of 5 km, and also off the southern coast of the neighbouring island of Santa Luzia in the vicinty of Água Doce and Curral for a distance of 2 km (Monteiro et al. 2004).
Countries occurrence:
Cape Verde
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Atlantic – eastern central
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2: 14
Number of Locations: 2
Lower depth limit (metres): 10
Upper depth limit (metres): 1
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is scarce in samples but it is not in decline.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations: Unknown Population severely fragmented: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is found in shallow water of 1 to 10 m depth. Adults of the species typically grow to 20–32 mm in length.
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade:

There is very limited offtake of this species. In common with all small Conus spp., the shells of this species are only traded for the specialist collector.  Their small size, condition and scarcity makes them less appealing than larger shells (M. J. Tenorio pers. comm. 2011). Their shells may also be gathered for the local tourist market and by tourists visiting the country, however, their small size (typically less than 25 mm) probably makes them less appealing than larger shells as marine curios.

The limited availability of shells of this species for sale on the mollusc shell market as reported through specialist websites and dealer catalogues (Rice 2007), with high prices demanded, may indicate scarcity.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is restricted to two small locations totally no more than 7 km of coastline.

The sites on Sao Vicente are subject to limited recreational activity as they lie close to a large town and thereby subject to low levels of threat.  Although this species is gathered by shell collectors there is limited off-take as it is scarce.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is restricted in its range and scarce. The smaller of the two islands, Santa Luzia, is barren and uninhabited and is a protected area.

Classifications [top]

9. Marine Neritic -> 9.2. Marine Neritic - Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
5. Biological resource use -> 5.4. Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources -> 5.4.1. Intentional use: (subsistence/small scale)
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Unknown ⇒ Impact score: Unknown 
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

♦  Sport hunting/specimen collecting
 International : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

IUCN. 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2012.1). Available at: (Accessed: 19 June 2012).

Monteiro, A., Tenorio, M.J. and Poppe, G.T. 2004. The Family Conidae, The West African and Mediterranean species of Conus. In: Poppe, G.T and Groh, K. (eds), A Conchological Iconography, pp. 270. ConchBooks, Hackenheim.

Rice, T. 2007. A Catalog of Dealers' Prices for Shells: Marine, Land and Freshwater. Sea and Shore Publications.

Citation: Tenorio, M.J. 2012. Conus saragasae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2012: e.T192610A2126961. . Downloaded on 04 October 2015.
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