Modjadji Cycad

Scientific Name
Encephalartos transvenosus Stapf & Burtt Davy
Higher Classification
Common Names
Broodboom (a), Cycad (e), Modjadje Cycad (e), Modjadje-broodboom (a), Modjadje-palm (a), Modjadji Cycad (e), Modjadji Palm (e), Modjadjibroodboom (a), Modjajes Palm (a), Mofaka (ns), Mutondolo (v), Tshifhanga (v), Tshitondolo (v)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
J.S. Donaldson
This species is very abundant in several locations, including the remarkable cycad forest at Modjadji. Although subpopulations in some locations have declined due to the impacts of collectors and habitat clearance, the species is not yet in danger of extinction.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Limpopo Drakensberg Escarpment and Soutpansberg.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Grassland, Savanna
Tall grassveld and mixed bushveld, mainly on steep rocky slopes facing southeast in the mistbelt zone.
Plants are removed from the wild by collectors and there is loss of habitat in some places.

The population at Modjadji is estimated to be 15 000 individuals and there are some other very large subpopulations.

Population trend
Protected in a number of provincial nature reserves and private conservancies.
A cycad nursery based on wild-collected seeds has been set up in collaboration with a rural community near to the Modjadji Nature Reserve.
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Encephalartos transvenosus Stapf & Burtt DavyLeast Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)
Encephalartos transvenosus Stapf & Burtt DavyRare Hilton-Taylor (1996)
Encephalartos transvenosus Stapf & Burtt DavyRare Hall et al. (1980)

Donaldson, J.S. 2003. Cycads. Status survey and conservation action plan. IUCN/SSC Cycad Specialist Group, Gland, Switzerland; Cambridge, UK.

Grobbelaar, N. 2003. Cycads. With special reference to the southern African species. (2nd ed.). Nat Grobbelaar, Pretoria.

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.

Osborne, R. 1989. Focus on Encephalartos transvenosus. Encephalartos 20:10-18.

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.

Donaldson, J.S. 2009. Encephalartos transvenosus Stapf & Burtt Davy. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2017.1. Accessed on 2019/04/23

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Distribution map

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