The Grey-faced Sengi, Rhynchocyon udzungwensis, is listed as ‘Vulnerable‘ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™. This unusual mammal is endemic to the Udzungwa Mountains of Tanzania, where it was discovered in 2005 and described in 2008.
Currently, the most significant threat to the Grey-faced Sengi are natural and human-caused fires that burn on the surrounding edges of the forests, gradually reducing the forest extent. The growth and expansion of the local human population is only likely to increase the pressures on the forest, while global habitat change may potentially further reduce forest cover. This species‘ restriction to just two locations makes it particularly vulnerable to these threats.
This Sengi occurs entirely within the Udzungwa Mountains National Park and Kilombero Nature Reserve. No utilisation of animals for food or trade is permitted in these areas, and a range of conservation activities are underway within the National Park. The Grey-faced Sengi is just one of many endemic species discovered in these mountains in the last decade, highlighting the importance of conserving these ancient forests.