Peripatopsis leonina Purcell, 1899:344

Lion's Hill velvet worm



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: 1900 (Hamer, 2003); 1904 (van Noort & Ranwashe, 2020)

IUCN RedList status: Critically Endangered


The IUCN classified this species as Critically Endangered (CR) because a lack of specimens does not necessarily mean that the species is extinct, because of its putatively cryptic nature. Specimens of an unknown species of Velvet Worm have also been seen but not collected at the type locality (Hamer, 2003).



Lion's Hill (= Signal Hill), Western Cape Province, South Africa


Biology & Ecology




IZIKO South Africa Museum Collection (1800-2013):

19 accessions


The Myriapoda & Onychophora collection (MY) of the Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle (MNHN - Paris):

MNHN-MY-MY39 (female) [syntype]

MNHN-MY-MY40 (male) [type]

MNHN-MY-MY41 (male)

MNHN-MY-MY42 (1 male; 1 female)

MNHN-MY-MY43 (2 males)


Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University:








Original scientific description:

Purcell, W. F. (1899). On the South African species of Peripatidae in the collection of the South African Museum. Annals of the South African Museum 1: 331-351.


Other references:

Bouvier, E.-L. (1905). Monographie des Onychophores. Annales des Sciences Naturelles, Zoologie 2: 1-383. [p. 121-122]

Hamer, M. (2003). Peripatopsis leonina. In: IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.4. ( Downloaded on 12 December 2010.

Hamer, M. L., Samways, M. J. and Ruhberg, H. (1997). A review of the Onychophora of South Africa, with discussion of their conservation. Annals of the Natal Museum 38(1): 283-312.

Mauriès J, Chagnoux S (2022). The Myriapoda & Onychophora collection (MY) of the Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle (MNHN - Paris). Version 74.256. MNHN - Museum national d'Histoire naturelle. Occurrence dataset accessed via on 2022-04-03.

Monge-Nájera, Julián (1994). Reproductive trends, habitat type and body characteristcs in velvet worms (Onychophora). Revista de Biología Tropical 42(3): 611-622.

Oliveira, I. S., Read, V. M. S. J. and Mayer, G. (2012). A world checklist of Onychophora (velvet worms), with notes on nomenclature and status of names. ZooKeys 211: 1-70.

Ruhberg, Hike. (1985). Die Peripatopsidae (Onychophora). Systematik, Okologie, Chorologie und phylogenetische Aspekte in Schaller F (Ed). Zoologica (Stuttgart) 137: .

van Noort D S, Ranwashe F (2020). IZIKO South Africa Museum Collection (1800-2013). Version 1.4. South African National Biodiversity Institute. Occurrence dataset accessed via on 2022-04-03.


<< Back to the Onychophorans database