California red-legged frog

Sensitive Fauna of the Santa Cruz Mountains Bioregion

Area Covered:
All species whose breeding distribution includes the Santa Cruz Mountains Bioregion were considered for possible inclusion in this list. The boundaries of the Bioregion are from the Golden Gate in the north to the Pajaro River in the south and from the Pacific Ocean shoreline on the west to the San Francisco Bay margin, or the Guadalupe River on the east. The list includes anadromous or catadromous species, but species that live exclusively in the ocean or bay were not included.

Criteria for Designation as “Sensitive”
Two or more well qualified local experts on each taxonomic group were consulted. They were asked to weigh the likely fate of each species given the future projection of current trends in land use, population growth, and species’ distributions and demographics. If they felt that a species was more likely than not to become extirpated in the Bioregion in the next 50 years, then that species was proposed for inclusion in the list. If the experts disagreed, which rarely happened, the Board of Directors of the Bioregional Council made the final decision as to whether or not to include the species on the list. The Bioregional Council retains full responsibility for all species included in the list. Board members who contributed to this effort were Ms. Toni Danzig, Ms. Diane Renshaw, Mr. Steve Singer, and Dr. Jerry Smith.

This list is not meant to be “set in stone”, but to change as new scientific information becomes available. The submittal of scientific information about any of the listed species, or about species proposed for inclusion is encouraged. Comments may be submitted to the Council care of Steven Singer, Project Coordinator, at this web site. Thumbnail accounts of a few species are currently available, and more will be added to this web site in the future.

Value of this List
This list has not been sanctioned by any government agency or academic institution. Instead it represents the informed opinion of the Santa Cruz Mountains Bioregional Council, a group of local environmental professionals and scientists knowledgeable about natural resources of the Bioregion and the management of native fauna and their habitat. The Board of Directors of the Bioregional Council is solely responsible for the contents of this list.

It is hoped that this list will encourage greater protection of the habitat of listed species during any proposed land use changes.   To this end, the Board of Directors encourages the widespread use of this list in environmental documents prepared by federal and state government agencies, the Association of Bay Area Governments, the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments, counties, cities, land conservancies, educational institutions, municipal water districts, open space districts, and private land owners.

Abbreviations Used in this List

FPS =  Fully Protected Species designated under the California Fish and Game Code 

SE, ST =  State Endangered, State Threatened  

FE, FT =  Federal Endangered, Federal Threatened  

CSC =  California Species of Special Concern  

FSC =Federal Species of Special Concern  

*  A locally common species, but colonies are sensitive to disturbance  

**  Species is relatively common in adjacent bioregions


  Salt marsh wandering shrewSorex vagrans halicoetesFSC, CSC

  Monterey vagrant shrewSorex vagrans paludivagus  

  Pallid batAntrozous pallidusCSC

  Townsend's western big-eared batCorynorhinus townsendii t.FSC, CSC

  Western red batLasiurus blossevillii  

  Fringed myotisMyotis thysanodesFSC

  Long-legged myotisMyotis volansFSC

  Santa Cruz kangaroo ratDipodomys venustus venustus  

  *San Francisco dusky-footed woodratNeotoma fuscipes annectensFSC, CSC

  Salt-marsh harvest mouseReithrodontomys raviventrisSE, FE, FPS

  Mountain lionPuma concolorCSC


  Western pond turtleActinemys (=Clemmys) marmorataCSC

  **Common side-blotched lizardUta stansburiana 

  Coast horned lizardPhrynosoma coronatum frontaleFSC, CSC

  California whiptail lizardCnemidophorus tigris mundus

  Black legless lizardAniella pulchra nigraCSC

  **California whipsnake (Striped racer)Masticophis lateralis lateralis  

  San Francisco garter snakeThamnophis sirtalis tetrataeniaSE, FE

  California blackheaded snakeTantilla planiceps 

  **Night snakeHypsiglena torquata 


  California tiger salamanderAmbystoma californienseCSC, FT

  Santa Cruz long-toed salamanderAmbystoma macrodactylum croceumSE,FE

  California red-legged frogRana draytoniiFT, CSC

  Foothill yellow-legged frogRana boyliiFSC, CSC


  Pacific lampreyLampetra tridentataFSC

  Coho salmon Central Calif. Coast ESUOncorhynchus kisutchSE, FT

  **Chinook salmonOncorhynchus tshawytschaCSC

  Steelhead Central Calif. Coast ESUOncorhynchus mykissFT

  Speckled daceRhinichthys osculus  

  Sacramento perchArchoplites interruptusFSC, CSC, possibly extirpated

  **Tule perchHysterocarpus traski

  Tidewater gobyEucyclogobius newberryiFE

Note: only species that breed in the Bioregion are included in this list and those whose occurrence has always been restricted to the extreme perimeter of their breeding range are not listed.

  American bitternBotaurus lentiginosusrookeries are FSC

  Great egretArdea alba  

  Snowy egretEgretta thularookeries are FSC

  Black-crowned night heronNycticorax nycticorax  

  Northern harrierCircus cyaneus  

  Golden eagleAquila chrysaetosFPS

  California clapper railRallus longirostris obsoletusSE, FE (at high risk)

  Virginia railRallus limicola 

  SoraPorzana carolina 

  Western snowy ploverCharadrius alexandrinus nivosus coastal pop.FT (at high risk)

  Spotted sandpiperActitis maculariasuitable habitat is naturally limited

  Caspian ternSterna caspiapossibly extirpated

  Common murreUria aalgesuitable habitat is limited (at high risk)

  Marbled murreletBrachyramphus marmoratusSE, FT (at high risk)

  Burrowing owlAthene cuniculariaFSC, CSC (at high risk)

  Olive-sided flycatcherContopus cooperiFSC

  Black swiftCypseloides nigerFSC, CSC (possibly extirpated)

  Vaux's swiftChaetura vauxiFSC, CSC

  Loggerhead shrikeLanius ludovicianusFSC, CSC (at high risk)

  Horned larkEremophila alpestris(at high risk)

  Bank swallowRiparia ripariaST, FSC (at high risk)

  Purple martinProgne subisCSC (at high risk)

  Western bluebirdSialia mexicana  

  Yellow warblerDendroica petechiaCSC

  Yellow-breasted chatIcteria virensCSC (at high risk)

  Lark sparrowChondestes grammacusFSC

  Tricolored blackbirdAgelaius tricolorFSC, CSC (at high risk)

New Breeders in Bioregion Limited Numbers, Future Status Uncertain

  OspreyPandion haliaetusre-initiation of breeding after long lapse

  Peregrine falconFalco peregrinusre-initiation of breeding after long lapse

  Cassin's aukletPtychoramphus aleuticus suitable habitat is naturally limited

  Rhinoceros aukletCerorhinca monocerata 

  Red-breasted sapsuckerSphyrapicus ruberFSC

  Varied thrushIxoreus naevius 

Insects and Other Invertebrates

  California floater musselAnodonta californiensis 

  California brackishwater snailTryonia imitator 

  Edgewood blind harvestmanCalicina (=Sitalcina) minorFSC

  Edgewood Park micro-blind harvestmanMicrocina edgewoodensisFSC

  Hom's micro-blind harvestmanMicrocina homiFSC

  Jung's micro-blind harvestmanMicrocina jungiFSC

  California linderiella shrimpLinderiella occidentalisFSC

  California freshwater (Tomales) isopodCaecidotea tomalensis 

  Ground cricketNeonemobius eurynotus 

  Zayante banded wing grasshopperTrimerotropis infantilisFE (local, Ben Lomond Sandhills)

  Ohlone tiger beetleCicindela ohloneFE

  Globose dune beetleCoelus globosusFSC

  Ricksecker's water scavenger beetleHydrochara rickseckeri 

  Leech's Skyline diving beetleHydroporus leechiFSC

  Mt. Hermon june beetlePolyphylla barbataFE (local, Ben Lomond Sandhills)

  San Francisco forktail damselflyIschnura gemina 

  Opler's longhorn mothAdela oplerellaFSC

  Smith's blue butterflyEuphilotes enoptes smithiiFE

  Bay checkerspot butterflyEuphydryas editha bayensisFT

  San Bruno elfin butterflyIncisalia mossii bayensisFE

  Mission blue butterflyPlebejus icarioides missionensisFE

  Unsilvered fritillary butterflySpeyeria adiaste adiaste 

  Callippe silverspot butterflySpeyeria callippe callippe 

  Antioch sphecid waspPhilanthus nasalislocal, Ben Lomond Sandhills

Special Species Aggregations

  Monarch butterfly aggregations

  Heronries (Great blue, Black-crowned night heron, other)

  Seabird colonies (alcids)

 Double-crested cormorant roosts

 Bat roosts or maternity colonies

Poorly Known Species
Not enough is known about the presence or absence of these species in the Bioregion or their population size and trend to determine if they warrant addition to this list.

  Western pipistrellePipistrellus hesperusoccur in Bioregion?

  Hoary batLasiurus cinereus

  Silver-haired batLasionycteris noctivagans

  Long-eared myotisMyotis evotisFSC

  Little brown myotisMyotis lucifugus

  Western small-footed myotisMyotis ciliolabrumFSC

  Western mastiff batEumops perotisFSC, CSC

  RingtailBassariscus astutusFPS


  San Joaquin coachwhip snakeMasticophis flagellum ruddocki

  California mountain kingsnakeLampropeltis zonata 

  Black salamanderAneides flavipunctatus 


  Spotted owlStrix occidentalisbreeding not confirmed, subspp. unknown

  Long-eared owlAsio otus 


  Empire Cave pseudoscorpionFissilicreagris (=Microcreagris) imperialis

  Dolloff cave spiderMeta dolloff 

  San Francisco lacewingNothochrysa californicaFSC

  Bumblebee scarab beetleLicnanthe ursinaFSC (extinct?)

  Coastal dune deerflyBrennania hera 

  Sandhills robberflyStenopogon sp. nov.

  Sandhills flesh-fliesSenotaenia sp. nov. and Metopia sp. nov.

  Santa Cruz rain beetlePleocoma conjugens conjugenslocally rare?

  Sandhills melittid beeHesperapis sp. nov.

Local Taxonomic Experts Consulted in the Preparation of this List

The Bioregional Council would like to thank the following local experts who contributed information that allowed us to prepare this list:

  Mammals:Mr. Mark Allaback, Mr. Paul Heady, Mr. Chris Lay, and Dr. William Liddicker

  Reptiles, Amphibians, and Fish:

  Dr. Allan Launer, Mr. Rich Seymour, Dr. Jerry Smith, Dr. Robert Stebbins, and Mr. Mike Westphal

  Birds:Mr. Bill Bousman, Mr. Peter Metropulos, Mr. Randy Morgan, and Mr. David Suddjian

  Insects and Other Invertebrates:Dr. Richard Arnold, Dr. Allan Launer, Mr. Randy Morgan

Reptiles, Amphibians, and Fish, copyright 2014 by the Santa Cruz Mountains Bioregional Council; Mammals, Birds, Insects and Other Invertebrates,

copyright 2004 by the Santa Cruz Mountains Bioregional Council