Acanthopsis ludoviciana

Scientific Name
Acanthopsis ludoviciana H.M.Steyn
Higher Classification
Acanthopsis hoffmannseggiana in the sense of Williamson (2000), not of (Nees) C.B.Clarke (misapplied name)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Vulnerable D2
Assessment Date
L. von Staden & H.M. Steyn
A localized species (EOO 206 km²), known from five locations and potentially threatened by overgrazing.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Northern Cape
Richtersveld, Kodaspiek to Vandersterrberg.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Central Richtersveld Mountain Shrubland, Western Gariep Hills Desert, Richtersveld Sheet Wash Desert
Sandy, well-drained soils, on flats as well as wedged among rocks on steep slopes.
Around Numees, Helskloof and Paradyskloof, severe overgrazing is causing ongoing, severe habitat degradation. Here the species survives on steep rocky ridges, where trampling is not causing as severe loss and erosion of soil, as well as hidden among spiny Aloe pearsonii. This species appears to not be grazed at present, but livestock has been observed to start grazing on apparently unpalatable species when all other grazing species have been depleted (P. van Wyk, pers. obs.), and should overstocking continue, this species may be impacted in future. On higher-lying, more remote areas such as Kodaspiek and the central Vandersterrberg, grazing is at present only occasional, but pressure may increase as grazing on lower slopes and more accessible areas continue to be depleted.

This species has a localized distribution, but is locally very common. The population appears stable at present, but could decline, should habitat degradation become more severe.

Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Acanthopsis ludoviciana H.M.SteynVU D22017.1
Acanthopsis sp. (Koekemoer 4370 PRE)VU D22015.1

Steyn, H.M. and Van Wyk, A.E. 2015. Taxonomic notes on the Acanthopsis disperma-hoffmannseggiana complex (Acanthaceae, tribe Acantheae), with an interim key to members of the genus. Phytotaxa 219(1):1-26.

Williamson, G. 2000. Richtersveld, the enchanted wilderness. Umdaus Press, Pretoria.

von Staden, L. & Steyn, H.M. 2014. Acanthopsis ludoviciana H.M.Steyn. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2022/01/26

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Distribution map

© L. von Staden

© L. von Staden

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