Countries of Occurrence:
Portugal - Azores
Facilitators / Compilers/s:
Galumna azoreana is an endemic species of the Azores (Portugal), known from the islands of Flores, Graciosa and Terceira. From the available data, it potentially has a small Extent of Occurrence (5,466 km 2), and a limited Area of Occupancy (68 km2), but these are likely to underestimates, as this species probably has a wider distribution through the soil component of the islands. It can be assumed that this species is affected by human activities and invasive plant species that alter the natural structure and composition of the soil, while future climatic changes and increased risk of droughts will also affect this species. The present situation of this species needs to be further assessed and further research is needed into its population, distribution, threats, ecology and life history. Conservation of natural habitats and invasive species control could potentially aid this species' conservation. Despite its presence in disturbed areas, based upon the incomplete knowledge regarding this species' population, distribution, threats and ecology, it is not possible to accurately estimate the extinction risk of the species and it could theoretically fall into any category. Therefore, this species is assessed as Data Deficient (DD).
Galumna azoreana is an Azorean-endemic oribatid mite species known from Flores, Graciosa and Terceira islands (Azores, Portugal) (Borges et al. 2010). It is known from some natural and disturbed or urbanised areas. It is present in two Natural Forest Reserves in Flores: Caldeiras Funda e Rasa and Morro Alto e Pico da Sé. From the available data, the Extent of Occurrence (EOO) could be ca 5,466 km² and the Area of Occupancy (AOO) could be 68 km².
No current population size estimates exist for this species. As an oribatid mite, it is possibly common and widespread in the soil habitat. Current Population Trend: Unknown.
The ecology and traits of this species are unknown. Oribatid mites are associated with organic matter in most terrestrial ecosystems, being found throughout the soil profile, in surface litter, on grasses, shrubs or in the bark and leaves of trees, among other habitats. Oribatida are also one of the most numerically dominant arthropod groups in the organic horizons of most soils (Behan-Pelletier 1999). Galumna azoreana has been found in native forest areas, but also in degraded habitats or in the vicinity of urban areas. Specimens were collected from the leaf litter of native species, but also from that of introduced or invasive species. Systems: Terrestrial.
A lack of information regarding the present range of this species precludes an assessment of potential threats. Nevertheless, it can be assumed that this species will be affected by future habitat declines as a consequence of climate change (Ferreira et al. 2016) and increased droughts. This species has been found in areas of native vegetation but also in disturbed and near urban areas, and it can be assumed that factors that degrade habitat quality, in the form of changes in the soil structure and composition, namely land use changes, agricultural practices, urbanisation, pesticides and nutrient loads or invasive plants, might also affect this species.
The species is not protected by regional law, but part of its habitat is in regionally protected areas (Natural Parks of Flores, Graciosa and Terceira). Besides climate change and increased risk of droughts, land-use changes, human activities and invasive species are likely the main current and future threats faced. As such, conservation of native habitats and invasive species control could potentially aid this species' conservation. Further research is needed into its population, distribution, threats, ecology and life history; and it is necessary to develop a monitoring plan for the invertebrate community in order to contribute to the conservation of this species.