Assessor: Krystal Tolley
Lizards from the Cordylidae family are very popular within the pet trade (e.g. Ouroborous cataphractus, Smaug giganticus, Cordylus warreni and Cordylus tropidosternum) and some over-exploitation occurs for certain species (Alves et al. 2008; Auliya et al. 2016; Parusnath et al. 2017), despite all cordylid lizards being on CITES Appendix II. Although Cordylus macropholis has been indicated as present in the pet trade (Mouton 2017), an interrogation of the CITES Trade database suggests otherwise. This species was only exported once, in a very limited number for trade more than a decade ago. Furthermore, the source of the export was Mozambique, not South Africa where this species is endemic. It is unknown if the origin of animals exported from Mozambique was South African, or if there was a mis-identification of a Mozambican species. There is also no trade presence on the internet. This species therefore cannot be considered as exploited for trade.
This species occurs in three disjunct subpopulations and the population trend has been highlighted as decreasing but this is due to habitat loss (Mouton 2017). The species has a reasonably large range (>2,600km2), whereby local extinctions due to exploitation for trade are not likely at present.
Very little is known regarding the life history of this species and therefore not possible to infer the effects of possible exploitation on this species regeneration potential.