Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Caryophyllales Cactaceae

Scientific Name: Mammillaria luethyi
Species Authority: G.S.Hinton
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), Hunt (1999) and Pilbeam (1999).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable D2 ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2009-10-15
Assessor(s): Fitz Maurice, W.A., Fitz Maurice, B & Hernández, H.M.
Reviewer(s): Chanson, J.S. & Goettsch, B.K.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Wyatt, S.
This species is listed as Vulnerable because it is known from only two locations and has an area of occupancy less than 20 km2. If the two locations were publicly known the threat from amateur collectors would be very high leading to the species becoming Critically Endangered or Extinct in a very short period of time.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2002 Endangered (EN)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is found in the state of Coahuila, Mexico, at elevations of around 800 m asl.
Countries occurrence:
Mexico (Coahuila)
Lower elevation limit (metres):800
Upper elevation limit (metres):800
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:At the time of publication of this species in 1996, it was thought to occur over a range of less than 200 m2, with an estimated population of less than 200 individuals. However, in 2006, the authors discovered a new population some kilometres distant from the original site and estimate the numbers of individuals found there to be many thousands (Lüthy 2007).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species grows on sloping calcareous rocky terrain in semi desert.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is grown as an ornamental, often as grafted plants. Lüethy states that upon revisiting the type locality ten years after its discovery, the area showed no sign of having been disturbed (Lüethy 2007). This would suggest that all material in cultivation has resulted from propagation of plants from the original collection. This species is widely and successfully cultivated.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is the most sought after cactus by collectors because of its rarity and unusual spines. If the localities were to be discovered by collectors, the populations would be subject to major declines. The precise locality is known only to a small number of experts. Despite the readily available populations in commercial cultivation, an intensive search for the localities continues by amateur and commercial collectors.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The plants are widely available throughout the world as a result of propagation from illegally exported specimens propagated from the original collection with approval of low level Mexican government officials. At this time, conservation measures would be counterproductive if they involved the type locality. It is listed on CITES Appendix II, but enforcement of the laws in the countries of destination is needed.

Classifications [top]

3. Shrubland -> 3.5. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
suitability: Suitable  
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: Future    

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

♦  Establishing ex-situ production *

Bibliography [top]

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

Fitz Maurice, W.A. and Fitz Maurice, B. 1998. Fieldnotes: Mammillaria luethyi - A new species has been described and an old mystery solved. Cactus and Succulent Journal (US) 70: 1.

Hinton, G. 1996. Mammillaria luethyi. Phytologia 80(1): 58-?.

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).

Lüthy, J. 2007. A new locality for Mammillaria luethyi G S Hinton. Cactus world 25 (supplement): 7-10.

Pilbeam, J. 1999. Mammillaria. Cirio Publishing Services, Southampton.

Citation: Fitz Maurice, W.A., Fitz Maurice, B & Hernández, H.M. 2013. Mammillaria luethyi. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T40839A2935955. . Downloaded on 05 October 2015.
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