BackPseudoyersinia canariensis Chopard, 1942

Pseudoyersinia canariensis Chopard, 1942

Canary Dwarf Mantis

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Coleoptera
  • Family: Mantidae
EN Endangered
IUCN Red List Status:

Countries of Occurrence:
Spain - Canaries


Battiston, R., Amerini, R., Garcia Becerra, R. & Oromi, P.

Hochkirch, A. & Bushell, M.


Facilitators / Compilers/s:

Assessment Rationale:

Pseudoyersinia canariensis is an endemic mantid from the island La Palma. At present time most of its ecology is unknown and the taxonomy needs to be revised (Becerra and Oromi 1999, Bercerra et al. 2001, Wieland et al. 2014). The species has an extent of occurrence (EOO) of ca. 290 km², an area of occupancy (AOO) of 48-200 km², and it occurs in a single known location. It is generally rare to encounter and a continuing decline in the number of subpopulations, number of mature individuals and in the extent and quality of habitat is inferred. The species is assessed as Endangered (EN) but more research is needed in order to clarify whether the species exists also on other islands.

Geographic Range:

Spain - Canaries
Extent of Occurrence (EOO):
290 (km2)
Area of Occupancy (AOO):
48-200 (km2)
Elevation Lower Limit:
100 (m)
Elevation Upper Limit:
1100 (m)
Biogeographic Realms:
Endemic Canaries


The only confirmed subpopulation of Pseudoyersinia canariensis seems to be resticted to the island La Palma, the presence of other subpopulations on Lanzarote and Tenerife needs to be verified.

Habitat and Ecology

Pseudoyersinia canariensis seems to be more abundant in the central part of the island La Palma, where it can be found in open sunny grassland areas and on the external part of the branches of the Canary pine (Pinus canariensis Chr. Sm. ex DC) or on the leaves of many legume plants of scrubland (i.e. Adenocarpus viscosus var. viscosus Webb et Berth, Genista benehoavensis (ex Bolle Svent.) and Spartocytisus supranubius (L. ) Webb & Berth.). Females usually lay ootheca on both vegetation and between rock fragments (Bercerra et al. 2001).

Major Threat(s):

Threats to this species are not known in detail. However, considering the reduced distribution of the species habitat destruction may be a serious threat, expecially in the coastal areas in the North and in the South of the island of La Palma. Local changes in land-use as intensive agriculture or a marked increase of overbuilding are contributing to the destruction of natural habitats of this species, even if their real impact needs to be studied in detail. The use of pesticides may also be a threat that may have a direct influence on this species or indirect by degrading its ecosystem. More research on the threats is needed.

Conservation Actions

This species benefits from some protected areas of the Canary Islands Network for Protected Natural Areas where the natural habitat is preserved. Most of the ecology of this species is unknown and research is needed. The taxonomy of the subfamily Amelinae is also problematic and needs to be solved with further morphological and molecular research (Wieland et al. 2014). The real distribution needs to be verified.