Tachyoryctes macrocephalus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Rodentia Spalacidae

Scientific Name: Tachyoryctes macrocephalus
Species Authority: (Rüppell, 1842)
Common Name(s):
English Giant Mole Rat

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Corti, M. & Lavrenchenko, L.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Cox, N. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Listed as Endangered because its extent of occurrence is probably less than 5,000 km², all individuals are in fewer than five locations, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2004 Vulnerable (VU)
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is restricted to the Bale Mountains of Ethiopia. It has been recorded from 3,000 to 4,150 m asl.
Countries occurrence:
Lower elevation limit (metres): 3000
Upper elevation limit (metres): 4150
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is quite common within its restricted range.
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is an inhabitant of alpine grassland habitats.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is threatened by overgrazing of its habitat by domestic livestock, both within and outside of the Bale Mountains National Park.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The majority of the species' range is within the Bale Mountains National Park. There is a general need to maintain suitable grassland habitat for this species.

Classifications [top]

4. Grassland -> 4.7. Grassland - Subtropical/Tropical High Altitude
suitability: Suitable  
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.1. Nomadic grazing
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.2. Small-holder grazing, ranching or farming
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends

Bibliography [top]

Musser, G. G. and Carleton, M. D. 2005. Superfamily Muroidea. In: D. E. Wilson and D. A. Reeder (eds), Mammal Species of the World: a geographic and taxonomic reference, pp. 894-1531. The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA.

Sillero-Zubiri, C., Tattersall, F.H., and Macdonald, D.W. 1995. Habitat selection and daily activity of giant molerats (Tachyoryctes macrocephalus): significance to the Ethiopian wolf (Canis simensis) in the Afroalpine ecosystem. Biological Conservation 72: 77-84.

Yalden, D. W. 1985. Tachyoryctes macrocephalus. Mammalian Species 237: 1-3.

Yalden, D. W. and Largen, M. J. 1992. The endemic mammals of Ethiopia. Mammal Review 22: 115-150.

Yalden, D.W., Largen, M.J. and Kock, D. 1976. Catalogue of the mammals of Ethiopia. 2. Insectivora and Rodentia. Monitore zoologico italiano/Italian Journal of Zoology, N.S. Supplemento 8(1): 1-118.

Yalden, D.W., Largen, M.J., Kock, D. and Hillman, J.C. 1996. Catalogue of the Mammals of Ethiopia and Eritrea. 7. Revised checklist, zoogeography and conservation. Tropical Zoology 9(1): 73-164.

Citation: Corti, M. & Lavrenchenko, L. 2008. Tachyoryctes macrocephalus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T21293A9265216. . Downloaded on 28 November 2015.
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