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Palaemonetes cummingi

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA ARTHROPODA MALACOSTRACA DECAPODA PALAEMONIDAE

Scientific Name: Palaemonetes cummingi
Species Authority: Chace, 1954
Common Name(s):
English Florida Cave Shrimp, Squirrel Chimney Cave Shrimp

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2012-07-10
Assessor(s): De Grave, S. & Rogers, C.
Reviewer(s): Cumberlidge, N. & Smith, K.
Justification:
The species has only been recorded from Squirrel Chimney, a limestone cave in Alachua County, Florida (USA), and is only known from the holotype collected in 1953, as well as up to a dozen specimens collected in the 1960s-1970s (Doonan 2001), with the last known specimens recorded in 1973. The site on which the cave occurs is privately owned, and currently protected from trespassing and development. However, urban development associated with the growth of Gainesville is expected to continue and will most likely alter land use practices in the vicinity of Squirrel Chimney Cave. These changes could potentially impact ground water quality due to storm water runoff, sewage drainage, herbicide/fertilizer use in the area, and erosion/sediment deposition. Further, the invasive fish species Notropis harperi (Redeye Chub) has been found in the cave in relatively high numbers. This species is an opportunistic predator, which probably preys upon larval shrimps (Doonan 2001). Extensive surveys were carried out in Squirrel Chimney in 1992-1994, as well as other caves in the vicinity (Doonan 2001), but no further specimens were found. It is however noted, that of the more than 100 sinkholes and caves in Alachua County, only 38 were surveyed, excluding the one (Goat Sink) previously considered to have similar habitat to Squirrel Chimney. On the basis of the available evidence it is considered to be Critically Endangered, Possibly Extinct. More extensive surveys are required in Alachua County to determine if other caves or sinkholes may hold populations of the species.
History:
1996 Vulnerable
1994 Vulnerable (Groombridge 1994)
1990 Vulnerable (IUCN 1990)
1988 Vulnerable (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1988)
1986 Vulnerable (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1986)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The species has only been recorded from Squirrel Chimney, a limestone cave in Alachua County, Florida (USA) (Strenth 1976).
Countries:
Native:
United States (Florida)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The species is only known from the holotype collected in 1953, as well as up to a dozen specimens collected in the 1960s-1970s (Doonan 2001).  The species is known to have abbreviated larval development (Dobkin 1971).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The species is known from subterranean water in a single solution cave.
Systems: Freshwater

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species is not utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The site on which the cave occurs is privately owned, and currently protected from trespassing and development. However, urban development associated with the growth of Gainesville, Florida is expected to continue and will most likely alter land use practices in the vicinity of Squirrel Chimney Cave. These changes could potentially impact ground water quality due to storm water runoff, sewage drainage, herbicide/fertilizer use in the area, and erosion/sediment deposition. Further, the invasive fish species Notropis harperi (Redeye Chub) has been found in the cave in relatively high numbers.  This species is an opportunistic predator, which probably preys upon larval shrimps (Doonan 2001) .

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The site is currently privately owned, and is protected from development.

Citation: De Grave, S. & Rogers, C. 2013. Palaemonetes cummingi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 20 December 2014.
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