Gazella leptoceros 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Cetartiodactyla Bovidae

Scientific Name: Gazella leptoceros
Species Authority: (F. Cuvier, 1842)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Slender-horned Gazelle, Rhim
French Gazelle À Cornes Fines Des Dunes, Gazelle À Cornes Fines, Gazelle Leptocère
Spanish Gacela De Astas Delgadas
Taxonomic Notes: Two subspecies have been named on the basis of phenotypic variation, although some authors have questioned the validity of named subspecies. Clarification through molecular genetic analysis is highly desirable.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered C2a(i) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Mallon, D.P., Cuzin, F., de Smet, K. & Hoffmann, M.
Reviewer(s): Mallon, D.P. & Chardonnet, P. (Antelope Red List Authority)
Listed as Endangered as the total population is estimated at 250 mature individuals, although population data are very sparse. This assessment is based on a conservative estimate of numbers according to the precautionary principle. Current and planned field survey work may refine these figures.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2007 Endangered (EN)
1996 Endangered (EN)
1994 Endangered (E)
1990 Endangered (E)
1988 Vulnerable (V)
1986 Vulnerable (V)
1965 Status inadequately known-survey required or data sought

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Occurs across the Sahara, west of the River Nile. Distribution coincides with the larger ergs, though rare or absent on the south-east periphery and apparently absent from the western dune complexes (Devillers et al. 2005). It has disappeared from most of its former range in Egypt’s Western Desert (Saleh 2001, El Alqamy and Baha El Din 2006). A single report from Morocco (Loggers et al. 1992) is unconfirmed.

The center of its distribution is found in the Great Western Erg, the Great Eastern Erg, the sandy zone which stretches from the Hamada de Tinrhert in Algeria to the Fezzan in Libya, and the smaller ergs in the periphery of the central Saharan massifs of the Hoggar and the Tassili des Ajjers (Beudels and Devillers, in press).

It is believed that the slender-horned gazelle was very widely distributed in the Sahara until relatively recently. In the last 10 years, its presence has been confirmed only in the Great Ergs of Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and the extreme Western desert of Egypt. No reports to the south of these locations have been supported by any hard evidence (Beudels and Devillers, in press).
Countries occurrence:
Algeria; Chad; Egypt; Libya; Mali; Niger; Sudan; Tunisia
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Numbers are believed to have undergone a serious decline due to uncontrolled hunting (Mallon and Kingswood 2001, Devillers et al. 2005). East (1999) estimated that the sub-Saharan Africa population could be as low as a few hundred and was unlikely to exceed a few thousand. Numbers are still declining in some areas mainly due to unregulated hunting. The size of the current population in Egypt and Libya is unknown, but is described as small (El Alqamy and Baha El Din 2006). All populations are reportedly small or very small. There is no recent survey information for several areas of the known range, and other areas of potential habitat such as the sand seas of Libya and western Algeria that have been poorly surveyed.
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Favours areas of dunes (ergs) and interdunal depressions. Ranges widely in search of ephemeral vegetation.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threat is hunting/poaching, though disturbance and degradation of natural habitats (especially erg vegetation) through desertification also has a negative impact (Devillers et al. 2005).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is listed on CMS Appendix I and is included in the CMS Action Plan for Sahelo-Saharan Antelopes.

Known to occur in Djebil National Park and Senghar National Park in Tunisia, Tassili des Ajjers National Park in Algeria (where reported from the Erg of T'im Merzouga; K. de Smet pers. comm. 2007), and possibly the Aïr-Ténéré National Nature Reserve (Niger). The species is present in about 20 collections in North Africa, Europe and North America (Devillers et al. 2005). The total number in captivity is <200.

Listed on CITES Appendix I.

Citation: Mallon, D.P., Cuzin, F., de Smet, K. & Hoffmann, M. 2008. Gazella leptoceros. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T8972A12943471. . Downloaded on 31 May 2016.
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