AMPHIBIAWEB
Praslinia cooperi
family: Indotyphlidae

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Seychelles

View distribution map using BerkeleyMapper.


Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status Vulnerable (VU)
See IUCN account.
CITES
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None

   

From the IUCN Red List Species Account:

 

Range Description

This species from the granitic Seychelles occurs on Mahé and Silhouette Islands. An old record for Praslin Island might be erroneous and is not mapped. On Mahé and Silhouette, it has been found only above 280 m asl. It is known from only ten localities (excluding Praslin), combined into two threat-defined locations (one for each island). Using its range as a proxy, the extent of occurrence (EOO) has been estimated as 44 km

Habitat and Ecology

It lives in relatively undisturbed, usually forested sites. It burrows in damp soil and leaf-litter. Unlike other caecilian species in the Seychelles, it is not recorded from near urban areas or houses, thus it is expected to have low tolerance to habitat disturbance. It probably breeds by larval development in streams and pools, but this is not confirmed.

Population

It is not a common species and it is rarely found; it was last collected in 1991 and has neither been seen nor searched for since (J. Gerlach pers. comm. November 2012).

Population Trend

Unknown

Major Threats

Assuming that soil moisture and temperature maintained by vegetation is important for the species, deforestation is considered a past threat to the species. The current possible threat is habitat degradation, primarily caused by accidental fires and invasive plant species. One prevalent invasive plant species is Cinnamomum verum, which was introduced in commercial plantations and is now widespread, modifying habitat by dominating forest composition, changing soil and leaf litter chemistry, thus resulting in poor soil fauna (J. Gerlach pers. comm. November 2012).

Conservation Actions

While the species is known from protected areas, these are not effectively managed. It occurs in the Morne Seychellois National Park on Mahé Island and the Silhouette National Park on Silhouette Island. The Silhouette National Park is currently unmanaged because the Silhouette Conservation Project previously run there by Nature Protection Trust of Seychelles was closed down in 2010; its purpose was research and conservation of all non-marine biodiverisity, including research on caecilians and a conservation focus on controlling invasive species and restoring habitats; all such action has currently ceased (J. Gerlach pers. comm. November 2012).

In view of its intolerance of habitat disturbance, increased habitat and site protection, and invasive species management are urgently needed throughout its range; the restoration of its previously deforested rainforest habitat is also recommended. Further research is needed on the species population status, natural history and threats.

Citation

IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group, 2013. Praslinia cooperi. In: IUCN 2013

 

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