Scientific Name
Conophytum tantillum N.E.Br. subsp. amicorum S.A.Hammer & Barnhill
Higher Classification
National Status
Status and Criteria
Critically Endangered B1ab(v)+2ab(v)
Assessment Date
A.J. Young, P.C.V. Van Wyk & D. Raimondo
Known from a single subpopulation that occurs in Namaqualand South Africa. It is restricted to a tiny area of less than 1 km². It has an extent of occurrence(EOO) and area of occurrence (AOO) in accordance with the IUCN guidelines of 4 km². This population is estimated to consist of less than 1000 individuals. It is currently declining as a result of illegal succulent plant trade with a significant increase in illegal collecting taking place since March 2019 as a result of demand for Conophytums coming from Asian countries. This taxon therefore qualifies as Critically Endangered under criterion B.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Northern Cape
information redacted, contact SANBI
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Namaqualand Blomveld
Vertical cliff faces, often in cracks and crevices on large quartz blocks.
This taxon occurs in an accessible site close to a town. The rangelands surrounding this town are communally owned, and is being severely degraded due to overstocking. This taxon has recently come under illegal poaching pressure with 20 plants obtained from Chinese poachers in 2019. Many more plants are likely to have been poached and the pressure to supply the large demand for Conophytums is ongoing. Illegal succulent harvesting is a severe threat, as the population is accessible from a nearby road. The population is very small and localized, and therefore any loss of individuals from the wild is rapidly increasing this species risk of extinction.

This taxon is known from a single, small localized subpopulation of less than 1000 mature individuals. There is ongoing decline of population due to illegal collection.

Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Conophytum tantillum N.E.Br. subsp. amicorum S.A.Hammer & BarnhillVU D1+22017.1
Conophytum tantillum N.E.Br. subsp. amicorum S.A.Hammer & BarnhillLeast Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)

Hammer, S. 2002. Dumpling and his wife: New view of the genus Conophytum. EAE Creative Colour, Norwich.

Hammer, S. and Barnhill, C. 1997. Odes part two: descriptions of new Mesembryanthema. Bradleya 15:42-47.

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.

Young, A.J., Van Wyk, P.C.V. & Raimondo, D. 2020. Conophytum tantillum N.E.Br. subsp. amicorum S.A.Hammer & Barnhill. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2023/11/28

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Distribution map

© A.J. Young

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