dcsimg

Brief Summary

Comprehensive Description

Distribution

    Distribution and Habitat
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    D. oaxacae is endemic to México, occurring in Jalisco, Michoacán, Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Chiapas (Alvarez and Martin, (1967); Casas-Andreu et al., (1996); Dunn, (1942); Erwin, (1973); Lafrentz, (1928); Mertens, (1930); Savage and Wake, (1972); Smith and Taylor, (1948); Taylor, (1938); Taylor and Smith, (1945)). Habitats range from sea level to 2100 m, the latter in Michoacán. Animals have been found primarily associated with cultivated (agricultural) areas once dominated by tropical deciduous forest, tropical scrub, and tropical evergreen forest, but also in those habitats and in pine-oak forest. In Oaxaca, the species occurs in the lowlands of the Sierra Madre del Sur and the Planicie Costera del Pacifico (Casas-Andreu et al. 1996), so vegetation is of low stature and is xerophyllic. Lafrentz (1928) reported that the type specimen was collected from the "dungheap of the mule stable", and that the common name is "metlapil."

Trends

    Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
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    Little is known about the natural history of Dermophis oaxacae. Its dietary habits and other aspects of its ecology and life history are inferred tobe similar to those of the closely related D. mexicanus (see Wake (1980)and Wake (1983)). D. mexicanus is a terrestrial burrower, is live bearing and has a long gestation period of about a year (Wake 1980).

Threats

    Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
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    The species is known form only approximately 30 specimens, and apparentlyhas not been collected anywhere in Mexico since 1972(Wake 1998). An effort must bemade to locate any remaining populations and to establish a monitoringand conservation program (Wake 1998).