Overview

Distribution

Range Description

This species is endemic to South Africa and has only been found in the Southern Natal province, and northern Eastern Cape province in the Transkei region (Poppe and Poppe 2011), also Mbotji and Coffee Bay area (S. Veldsman pers comm. October 2011). The type locality is Margate, and at present, the species is only known from two main localities (S. Veldsman pers comm. October 2011).

Much of this species' range is now contained within the Pondoland marine protected area (www.protectedplanet.net), which is not an official protected area, but may nonetheless afford some protection to this species.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
There is little information on habitats of this species in the literature. It is referred to as being caught on coral reef (Poppe and Poppe 2011) where it is found in very localised patches (S. Veldsman pers. comm. October 2011). The species depth range is 35-50 m and it is a mollusciverous species (S. Veldsman pers. comm. October 2011). This species will grow to approx. 90 mm (www.vianetconchology.com).

Systems
  • Marine
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
VU
Vulnerable

Red List Criteria
A2ac; B1ab(v)

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2013

Assessor/s
Veldsman, S.G.

Reviewer/s
Peters, H. & Raybaudi-Massilia, G.

Contributor/s

Justification
This species is endemic to South Africa and has only been found in the Southern Natal province, and northern Eastern Cape province in the Transkei region but also Mbotji and Coffee Bay area. This species has been recently described, and was immediately sought after by collectors. This has led to a decline in the number of mature individuals as witnessed over a ten year period, so much so that now no individuals have been recently found in the two main localities. It is possible that further deeper water populations occur for this species, but using a precautionary approach, we estimate its number of locations to be less than ten, with an extent of occurrence of less than 1,000 km2. A decline in mature individuals has been observed in the two known main localities which is likely to be continuing if new accessible populations are discovered or known populations show recovery, as this is a very highly sought after shell. As a result, we deem this species to be Vulnerable under criterion B. If further research expands or restricts the number of locations, the conservation assessment could be amended to EN or NT as appropriate.

Furthermore, the disappearance of the species from the main two localities from which it was known suggests that there has been a 30% decline in the population of this species, assuming the two main localities harbouring the majority of the population and the species occurring in no more than ten locations. The decline has been observed over a period of ten years.
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Population

Population
There are no population data for this species in the literature. It has always been inherently rare, known specifically from a few populations. No specimens have been found at these locations recently. This decline has been observed over the last ten years (S. Veldsman pers. comm. October 2011). There may be additional populations of this species in deeper waters.

Using a precautionary estimate of the species' occurrence in at most ten locations, and a disappearance of the species from the main two locations over the timeframe of ten years, we can infer a decline of at least 20% and more probably in the region of 30% for this species (the main locations disappeared), based on an observed decline in the number of subpopulations/locations.

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
Known populations of this species have been overcollected as a result of its recent description, rarity and size. This has caused observed declines in the known populations, and no recent specimens have been found in these areas (S. Veldsman pers. comm. October 2011). It is likely that there are more populations in deeper water which are yet to be discovered.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Much of this species' range is within the limits of the Pondoland marine protected area (www.protectedplanet.net), which is not an official protected area, but may nonetheless afford some protection to the species. Further research into its distribution is needed to establish whether there are additional deeper water populations of this species.
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Wikipedia

Conus immelmani

Conus immelmani is a species of sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Conidae, the cone snails and their allies.[1]

Like all species within the genus Conus, these snails are predatory and venomous. They are capable of "stinging" humans, therefore live ones should be handled carefully or not at all.

Contents

Description

Distribution

References

  1. ^ Conus immelmani Korn, 1998.  Retrieved through: World Register of Marine Species on 27 March 2010.
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