Red List of South African Species

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Near Threatened (NT)
Assessors: Michael Samways
Facilitators: Dewidine Van Der Colff
Reviewers: Domitilla Raimondo


Both within and outside the region, this species has a wide distribution and is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a threatened or Near Threatened category and is assessed as Least Concern within the Southern African region. Its current global status is also Least Concern. However, in South Africa it has an area of occupancy (AOO) of 48 km2 and is known from between five and 10 locations across a wide extent. It is subject to land transformation of its habitat which is adversely synergistic with El Niño Southern Oscillation events, especially droughts in the north/east savanna area of South Africa. These threats result in a reduction in extent of occurrence, AOO, habitat quality and number of mature individuals. It is likely to breed at some of the locations where it occurs. This species is assessed as Vulenerable B2 ab(i,ii,iii,iv). However, since this is a regional assessment at the national level based on the IUCN guidelines, a regional adjustment is required as the species is widespread and immigration from neighbouring countries is possible. The species is thus assessed as Near Threatened B2 ab(i,ii,iii,iv).


Within the southern Africa region, this species is known from all countries except for Eswatini (Swaziland). In South Africa, only a few specimens are known, from the northern, hot savanna areas (Samways 2006; 2008, Samways and Simaika 2016) and also from inland northern KwaZulu-Natal. Globally, the species has been recorded in Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Angola, Namibia, Mozambique and South Africa.

Population trend


Rare and highly localized in South Africa.


In South Africa there are only occasional records. Here it appears to be susceptible to adverse effects of El Niño Southern Oscillation events and land transformation through cattle trampling of marginal reed beds (especially 2003-2005 and 2014-2016). It is likely to be susceptible to global climate change. Globally there are no major threats known across most of its range.


Occurs in protected areas in parts of its range (including the Kruger National Park). No conservation measures are known to be in place or are planned at present.

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