Cambarus miltus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Malacostraca Decapoda Cambaridae

Scientific Name: Cambarus miltus Fitzpatrick, 1978
Common Name(s):
English Rusty Grave Digger

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2010-06-01
Assessor(s): Cordeiro, J. & Thoma, R.F.
Reviewer(s): Collen, B. & Richman, N.
Contributor(s): Livingston, F., 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.
Cambarus miltus has been assessed as Least Concern. This species has a relatively wide distribution, with an extent of occurrence of 17,000 km2. Furthermore, it is not thought to face any major threat at present. It is more common than previously thought.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is known from a limited portion of the Escambia River drainage in extreme southern Alabama and western Florida (Taylor et al. 1996). Schuster and Taylor (2008) recently documented several dozen new occurrences in Alabama and Florida. This species is found in one site in Baldwin County, Alabama (Fitzpatrick 1978) 6 records near the type locality in Baldwin County, Alabama, 2 records from Covington County and further records from Corn Branch and Negro Creek in Baldwin County (Fitzpatrick 1991, Mirarchi et al. 2004, Schuster and Taylor 2004, Schuster et al. 2008). In April 2007, according to the Florida Natural Heritage Program (FL NHP) a small female was collected in McDavid Creek, Escambia County, Florida (D. Jackson, FL NHP, pers. comm. 2007 cited in NatureServe 2009). Schuster and Taylor (2008) reported this species from 31 sites, in 10 basins (including Mobile Bay, Perdido River, Perdido Bay, Blackwater River,  Pascagoula Bay, Mississippi Sound, Fish River, Choctawhatchee Bay, and Choctawhatchee Bay) in Covington and Mobile counties, Alabama, and Escambia, Holmes, and Washington counties, Florida.

The extent of occurrence (EOO) of this species has been estimated to exceed 17,000 km2.

Countries occurrence:
United States (Alabama, Florida)
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The population in Daphne's D'Olive Creek, south Baldwin County, Alabama, is healthy and is estimated to equal hundreds, if not thousands, of individuals (Raines 2007). This species has recently been shown to be much more common than previously thought (Schuster and Taylor 2008).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species is a primary burrower (Fitzpatrick 1978). It lives within 50 m of flowing water but is intolerant of saline intrusion into groundwater.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): It is unknown whether this species is impacted upon by any major threat processes. However, it is unlikely to be undergoing any significant threat (R. Thoma, T. Jones and J. Cordeiro pers. comm. 2009).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species has been given a Global Heritage Status Rank of G3 by NatureServe (Taylor et al. 2007, NatureServe 2009) and Threatened by the American Fisheries Society (Taylor et al. 2007). However, recent surveys have indicated it is much more common than previously expected (R. Thoma, T. Jones and J. Cordeiro pers. comm. 2009).

Further research is required to determine abundance and major threats.

Classifications [top]

5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.1. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls)
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.18. Wetlands (inland) - Karst and Other Subterranean Hydrological Systems (inland)

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats

Bibliography [top]

Fitzpatrick, J.F. 1978. Tulane Studies in Zoology and Botany 20(3/4): 57-97.

IUCN. 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2010.3). Available at: (Accessed: 2 September 2010).

Mirarchi, R.E., Bailey, M.A., Garner, J.T., Haggerty, T.M., Best, T.L., Mettee, M.F. and O'Neil, P. 2004. Alabama Wildlife. Volume Four: Conservation and Management Recommendations for Imperiled Wildlife. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

NatureServe. 2009. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. Version 7.1. Internet

OutdoorAlabama. 2008. Wildlife Conservation. Alabama Available at:

Raines, B. 2007. Revival of the gravedigger. Crayfish News 29(1): 12 - 13.

Schuster, G.A. and Taylor, C.A. 2004. Report on the crayfishes of Alabama: literature and museum database review, species list with abbreviated annotations and proposed conservation statuses. Illinois Natural History Survey Technical Report, 2004.

Schuster, G.A., Taylor C.A. 2008. Survey of southern Alabama for the rusty gravedigger crayfish, Cambarus miltus. Technical Report 2008(2). Illinois Natural History Survey, Champaign, Illinois.

Schuster, G.A,Taylor, C.A, and Johansen J. 2008. An Annotated Checklist and Preliminary Designation of Drainage Distributions of the Crayfishes of Alabama. Southeastern Naturalist 7(3): 493-504.

Taylor, C.A., Schuster, G.A., Cooper, J.E., DiStefano, R.J., Eversole, A.G., Hobbs III, H.H., Robison, H.W., Skelton, C.W. and Thoma, R.F. 2007. A Reassessment of the Conservation Status of Crayfishes of the United States and Canada after 10+ Years of Increased Awareness. Fisheries, American Fisheries Society 32(8): 372-389.

Taylor, C.A., Warren Jr, M.L., Fitzpatrick, J.F., Hobbs Jr, H.H., Jezerinac, W.L., Pflieger, W.L. and Robison, H.W. 1996. Conservation status of crayfishes on the United States and Canada. Fisheries 21: 25-38.

Citation: Cordeiro, J. & Thoma, R.F. 2010. Cambarus miltus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T3699A10024992. . Downloaded on 18 June 2018.
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