Scyllarides latus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

Translate page into:

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Malacostraca Decapoda Scyllaridae

Scientific Name: Scyllarides latus (Latreille, 1802)
Common Name(s):
English Mediterranean Slipper Lobster
French Grandecigale
Spanish Cigarra
Pseudibacus veranyi Guérin Méneville, 1855
Scyllarus latus Latreille, 1802

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2009-12-03
Assessor(s): Butler, M., MacDiarmid, A. & Cockcroft, A.
Reviewer(s): Collen, B., Livingstone, S. & Richman, N.
Contributor(s): Batchelor, A., De Silva, R., Dyer, E., Kasthala, G., Lutz, M.L., McGuinness, S., Milligan, H.T., Soulsby, A.-M. & Whitton, F.
Scyllarides latus has been assessed as Data Deficient. This species has been subject to intense harvesting pressure throughout its range. In some areas, such as Italy and the Azores, attempts at recovery of stocks may be too late. A global management strategy needs to be implemented that focuses on protecting key habitat areas. Further data is needed on the population status of stocks at the present time before a more accurate assessment of conservation status can be made.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is distributed throughout the Mediterranean except in the northern and central Adriatic. It is also found in the central eastern Atlantic from the coast of Portugal (near Lisbon) to Senegal, Madeira, the Azores, the Selvagens Islands, and Cape Verde Islands (Holthuis 1991, Pessani and Mura 2007). The type locality for this species is in the Mediterranean from the coast near Rome (Holthuis 1991).
Countries occurrence:
Albania; Algeria; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Cape Verde; Cyprus; Egypt (Sinai); France (Corsica, France (mainland)); Gibraltar; Greece (East Aegean Is., Greece (mainland), Kriti); Israel; Italy (Italy (mainland), Sardegna, Sicilia); Lebanon; Libya; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Malta; Mauritania; Monaco; Montenegro; Morocco; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Portugal (Azores, Madeira, Portugal (mainland), Selvagens); Spain (Baleares, Canary Is., Spain (mainland), Spanish North African Territories); Syrian Arab Republic; Tunisia; Turkey (Turkey-in-Europe); Western Sahara
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Atlantic – northeast; Atlantic – eastern central; Mediterranean and Black Sea
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):400
Upper depth limit (metres):2
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


This species is the subject of intensive harvesting and as a result it has become rare along the European coast of the west Mediterranean and in its Atlantic Ocean range of distribution. It is still quite common in the eastern Mediterranean along the coasts of Israel, Cyprus and Turkey, the southern coast of Crete (Greece), and along the North African coast (Pessani and Mura 2007).

A reasonable population of the species has been discovered off the coast of Albania, probably due to the fact that the fishery here is not as well developed as in the rest of the Mediterranean (Pessani and Mura 2007).

Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This nocturnal species forages at night and shelters during the day in lairs within rocks or in underwater caves (Lavalli et al. 2007). It typically dwells inshore on: rocky substrates, inhabiting shallow subtidal zones dominated by barrens, seaweeds, deeper subtidal zones dominated by reef animals, and sponge gardens. It is normally found in depths between 2 and 50 m; but has been recorded up to 400 m deep (Pessani and Mura 2007).

Gregarious in nature (Lavalli et al. 2007), this species eats bivalves and gastropods (Lavalli et al. 2007, Pessani and Mura 2007) and can reach total lengths of up to 45 cm; but is normally not more than 30 cm (Pessani and Mura 2007).

This species is thought to reproduce seasonally in the warmer months from June to August (Holthuis 1991, Hearn et al. 2007), and its fecundity ranges from 100,000-356,000 eggs per female (Sekiguchi et al. 2007). No juveniles of this species have ever been found and it has been speculated that these life-stages may inhabit deep sea habitats (Lavalli et al. 2007). Generation length is unknown.


Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is subject to intensive harvesting throughout most of its range due to its large size (Pessani and Mura 2007).

This species is taken mainly by hand (divers); but also with trammel nets, trawls, and lobster pots (Holthuis 1991, Spanier and Lavalli 2007). Holthuis (1991) reported that 2-3 tonnes of this species is taken annually in Israel. However, recent landings data is not available because the harvesting done by scuba divers is not reported to the fisheries departments. There are no fisheries records for this species from other areas where commercial harvesting exists (Turkey, Algeria), but it has been noted that stocks are depleted in other parts of this species range such as the Mediterranean coasts of Europe, and in its Atlantic Ocean range of distribution (Pessani and Mura 2007, Spanier and Lavalli 1998 in Spanier and Lavalli 2007).

In Italy this species is subject to uncontrolled fishing by trammel nets and underwater fishing, even though it was apparent in the 1970s that it was already becoming rare (Pessani and Mura 2007).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threat facing this species is over-harvesting. Although still common in parts of its range, this species has been over-exploited in the Azores and Italy to the extent that these stocks may not be able to recover (Bianchini and Ragonese 2007).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

This species was declared a marine species in need of protection in the western Mediterranean (Spanier 1991 in Spanier and Lavalli 2007). It is subject to the 92/43/EEC (European Economic Community) Council Directive (1992) dealing with the preservation of natural and seminatural habitats, as well as wild flora and fauna (Habitats Directive; Annex V: Animal and plant species of Community interest); therefore exploitation may be subject to management measures (Pessani and Mura 2007). Harvesting in Sardinia was forbidden between 2000 - 2003 (Pessani and Mura 2007). However, the establishment of fishery regulations was too little, too late, for the dwindling populations of this species in the Azores and Italy, which may not be able to recover (Bianchini and Ragonese 2007).

A global management strategy for this species needs to be implemented in order to maintain stocks at sustainable levels. The rocky outcrops that are the preferable habitat for this species are limited in the southeastern Mediterranean. Therefore management should focus on these ecosystems which also serve as preferred grounds for other economically important species such as groupers, bream and octopuses (Spanier and Lavalli 2007).

A decline in global captures of Scyllaridae has been documented, although information on specific species is lacking (Spanier and Lavalli 2007). Further research is necessary to determine the impact that global harvesting is having on specific species, and to clarify if the documented decline is due to reduced populations or simply reduced effort.


Citation: Butler, M., MacDiarmid, A. & Cockcroft, A. 2011. Scyllarides latus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T169983A6698918. . Downloaded on 20 September 2018.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided