Dune Pendent-medlar

Scientific Name
Vangueria monteiroi (Oliv.) Lantz
Higher Classification
Ancylanthos monteiroi Oliv., Lagynias monteiroi (Oliv.) Bridson
Common Names
Dune Pendent-medlar (e)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
H. Matimele, D. Raimondo & J.E. Burrows
Vangueria monteiroi has a restricted distribution (national EOO 3051 km²), and occurs as sparsely scattered individuals. In spite of ongoing habitat loss and degradation, it is not considered to be in danger of extinction as it is resilient to moderate disturbance and only a small proportion of its habitat has been irreversibly modified.
Not endemic to South Africa
Provincial distribution
An endemic to the Maputaland Centre of Endemism, occurring from Mphakathini west of Mbazwana in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, northwards to Bilene in Gaza Province in southern Mozambique.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Indian Ocean Coastal Belt, Savanna
This large shrub or small tree is found scattered in coastal woodland and dune forest across its known range. It is common in abandoned croplands of subsistence farming areas, and has also been recorded in areas where livestock grazing and timber exploitation has occurred. It can be inferred that the species is likely to be resilient to disturbance, and can probably readily colonise disturbed areas. There is no information on recruitment but this is probably from seed. Birds and other animals play an important role on dispersing the seeds as they feed on it (Boon 2010). Vangueria monteiroi has a generation length of 15 years.
There has been a rapid spread of urban and rural settlements, industrial development, road construction and agriculture in southern Mozambique and northern coastal areas of KwaZulu-Natal over the past 30 years. At this stage, no more than 10% of its habitat has been irreversibly modified, the majority of which occurred in Mozambique. This species is resilient to moderate disturbance, and therefore charcoal production and shifting agriculture that result in degraded woodlands are favouring this species and the population is possibly increasing, rather than decreasing. The species is scrambling shrub or small tree, multi-stemmed from the base (Boon 2010) and not suitable for charcoal production or firewood. Parts of the population occur within protected areas such as Tembe Elephant Park and Ndumo Game Reserve in South Africa and Licuati Forest Reserve in Mozambique.

A combination of herbarium specimens, literature (Bridson 1998, Boon 2010) and field surveys conducted in 2015 by the authors of this assessment indicate that there are four scattered subpopulations. In South Africa, there are two subpopulations, one occurring across the Tembe-Ndumo corridor, and the second from Mbazwana to Kosi Bay. In Mozambique there is a subpopulation at Licuati Forest Reserve and another around Bilene in Macia District, Gaza Province. However, extensive areas of suitable habitat has not yet been surveyed, and it may be more common. Field counts of Vangueria monteiroi around Bilene area in Macia District recorded 62 individuals, sparsely scattered over a wide area. The size of the South African subpopulations have not yet been quantified.

Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Vangueria monteiroi (Oliv.) LantzLC 2017.1
Lagynias monteiroi (Oliv.) BridsonLeast Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)
Lagynias monteiroi (Oliv.) BridsonNot Threatened Hilton-Taylor (1996)
Ancylanthos monteiroi Oliv.Rare Hall et al. (1980)

Boon, R. 2010. Pooley's Trees of eastern South Africa. Flora and Fauna Publications Trust, Durban.

Bridson, D.M. 1998. Rubiaceae. In: G.V. Pope (ed). Flora Zambesiaca 5 (Part 2):211-369. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Hall, A.V., De Winter, M., De Winter, B. and Van Oosterhout, S.A.M. 1980. Threatened plants of southern Africa. South African National Scienctific Programmes Report 45. CSIR, Pretoria.

Hilton-Taylor, C. 1996. Red data list of southern African plants. Strelitzia 4. South African National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.

Lantz, H. and Bremer, B. 2005. Phylogeny of the complex Vanguerieae (Rubiaceae) genera Fadogia, Rytigynia, and Vangueria with close relatives and a new circumscription of Vangueria. Plant Systematics and Evolution 253(1/4):159-183.

Raimondo, D., von Staden, L., Foden, W., Victor, J.E., Helme, N.A., Turner, R.C., Kamundi, D.A. and Manyama, P.A. 2009. Red List of South African Plants. Strelitzia 25. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

Matimele, H., Raimondo, D. & Burrows, J.E. 2016. Vangueria monteiroi (Oliv.) Lantz. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2024/02/24

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Distribution map

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