Taxonomy

Animalia Chordata Vertebrata Amphibia Caudata Plethodontidae Thorius Thorius munificus

Taxonomic notes: Section empty

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Geographic Range

This species is known from the area of Las Vigas and La Joya in central Veracruz, Mexico, at 2,200-2,600 m asl.

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Habitat

It is a terrestrial species and inhabits pine-oak and pine forest, woodlands, and madrone (arbutus forest) with abundant shrubby and ericaceous plants. It is generally found under bark and fallen logs, and in leaf-litter. It reproduces by direct development.

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Al interior de la reserva el ejemplar se localizó en un bosque de pino-encino en una cañada, entre la hojarasca (Pineda & Aguilar-López, obs. pers.).

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Population

The population of this species has declined, it was abundant in the past. Surveys in 2003, 2004, and 2006 by multiple researchers were unsuccessful in finding any animals in suitable habitat. Recent studies performed by Eduardo Pineda and his group and by Sean Rovito found 1 specimen at Las Vigas (2010, Rovito) and 2 specimens at La Joya (2012 Pineda and Aguilar Lopez).

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Un ejemplar de esta especie fue registrado en el área natural protegida de San Juan del Monte, Las Vigas, Veracruz en trabajo de campo intenso realizado entre junio y diciembre de 2012 (Pineda & Aguilar-López, obs. pers.).

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Threats

The main threat is severe habitat loss and degradation as a result of logging, agriculture (including livestock farming), and human settlement.

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La transformación del hábitat es la principal amenaza para esta especie. La reserva de San Juan del Monte se encuentra rodeada por asentamientos humanos, zonas agrícolas y está divida por una autopista de reciente creación, lo cual puede reducir el desplazamiento de la especie en el paisaje y confinarla a sobrevivir en pocos fragmentos de bosque con las condiciones adecuadas (Pineda & Aguilar-López, obs. pers.).

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Specific Threats

  • 2.1.1 Shifting agriculture
  • 7.1.3 Trend Unknown/Unrecorded
  • 1.1 Housing & urban areas
  • 5.3.5 Motivation Unknown/Unrecorded
  • 2.3.2 Small-holder grazing, ranching or farming
  • 2.1.2 Small-holder farming

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Conservation Actions

It has not been recorded in any protected areas, though it may be present in Parque Nacional Cofre de Perote (this requires confirmation). Certainly, remaining habitat in the range of this species is in urgent need of protection.

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La presencia de esta especie en la reserva de San Juan del Monte, es el primer registro de esta especie para una ANP de cualquier índole, por lo que es necesario reforzar actividades de conservación como la reconexión de los fragmentos de bosque mediante corredores de vegetación lineales. La educación ambiental sobre esta especie, es necesaria debido a las falsas creencias que existen en torno a esta y por las cuales es exterminada (Pineda & Aguilar-López, obs. pers.).

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Specific Actions

  • 1.1 Site/area protection
  • 1.2 Resource & habitat protection

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Red List Rationale

Listed as Critically Endangered because its extent of occurrence is less than 100 km², all individuals are known from a single location, and there is a continuing rapid decline in the extent and quality of its habitat, and in the number of mature individuals. Additionally, the species is known to have declined by more than 80% in recent years for reasons that are not fully understood and these declines are likely to continue if the species is not already extinct.

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Bibliography

  • Hanken, J. 1983. Genetic variation in a dwarfed lineage, the Mexican salamander genus Thorius (Amphibia: Plethodontidae): Taxonomic, ecologic, and evolutionary implications. Copeia 1983: 1051-1073.
  • Hanken, J. and Wake, D.B. 1998. Biology of tiny animals: systematics of the minute salamanders (Thorius: Plethodontidae) from Veracruz and Puebla, Mexico, with descriptions of five new species. Copeia: 312-345.
  • Parra-Olea, G., García-París, M. and Wake, D.B. 1999. Status of some populations of Mexican salamanders. Revista de Biologia Tropical: 217-223.
  • Parra-Olea, G., Papenfuss, T.J. and Wake, D.B. 2001. New species of lungless salamanders of the genus Pseudoeurycea (Amphibia: Caudata: Plethodontidae) from Veracruz, Mexico. Scientific papers of the Natural History Museum of the University of Kansas: 1-9.

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