Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Caryophyllales Cactaceae

Scientific Name: Turbinicarpus alonsoi
Species Authority: Glass & S.Arias
Common Name(s):
Spanish Biznaguita
Taxonomic Source(s): Hunt, D., Taylor, N. and Charles, G. (compilers and editors). 2006. The New Cactus Lexicon. dh Books, Milborne Port, UK.
Taxonomic Notes: Accepted as a valid species by Anderson (2001) and Hunt (1999)

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(v)+2ab(v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2009-11-19
Assessor(s): Fitz Maurice, W.A., Sánchez , E., Fitz Maurice, B & Guadalupe Martínez, J.
Reviewer(s): Superina, M. & Goettsch, B.K.
Turbinicarpus alonsoi is considered to be Critically Endangered due to its occurrence in a single location with an area of less than 10 km², and because it is continuing to rapidly decline as a result of illegal collecting.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2002 Critically Endangered (CR)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to Guanajuato, Mexico. It grows in a single location of less than 10 km² near Xichú, at about 1,900 m asl.
Countries occurrence:
Mexico (Guanajuato)
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:9
Number of Locations:1
Lower elevation limit (metres):1900
Upper elevation limit (metres):1900
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The current estimated population size is less than 5,000 individuals.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:4999Continuing decline of mature individuals:Yes
All individuals in one subpopulation:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This cactus grows in semi-desert scrub on steep rocky calcareous slopes.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species is used as an ornamental, for which it is illegally collected in the wild.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): These plants are threatened by illegal collecting. The habitat has become widely known to collectors. Since its discovery, the population has been reduced by more than 50%.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This cactus does not occur in any protected area. It is listed on CITES Appendix I, but the laws governing imports in the countries of destination need to be enforced. This species is currently propagated in Europe from illegally collected plants.
The Cadereyta Regional Botanic Gardens has developed a universal technique to reproduce species of the genus Turbinicarpus (including Gymnocactus), with a rate of 5x/4 weeks and 95% soil adaptation success (E. Sánchez pers. comm. 2011).

Classifications [top]

3. Shrubland -> 3.5. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
suitability: Suitable season: resident major importance:Yes
0. Root -> 6. Rocky areas (eg. inland cliffs, mountain peaks)
suitability: Suitable season: resident 
5. Law & policy -> 5.4. Compliance and enforcement -> 5.4.1. International level

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Occur in at least one PA:No
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
  Included in international legislation:Yes
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:Yes
5. Biological resource use -> 5.2. Gathering terrestrial plants -> 5.2.1. Intentional use (species is the target)
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Rapid Declines ⇒ Impact score: Medium Impact: 7 

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 Local : ✓   National : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

Anderson, E.F. 2001. The Cactus Family. Timber Press, Portland.

Hunt, D. 1999. CITES Cactaceae Checklist, 2nd ed. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and International Organization for Succulent Plant Study (IOS).

IUCN. 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2013.1). Available at: (Accessed: 12 June 2013).

Citation: Fitz Maurice, W.A., Sánchez , E., Fitz Maurice, B & Guadalupe Martínez, J. 2013. Turbinicarpus alonsoi. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T40972A2948392. . Downloaded on 06 October 2015.
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