Plethodon hubrichti (Peaks of Otter) on left and Plethodon cinereus (Redback) on right found yesterday! These two salamander
species are competing for food, living space and resources, and much research is being performed upon P. hubrichti by my University/research group. This Peaks of Otter salamander is only found along a 19 Km stretch of the blue ride parkway, and nowhere else in the world! Truly amazing creatures.
Night hiking Holston Mountain for Yonahlossee salamanders! Here are a few stunning individuals found by @theruggedherpetologist
The Yonahlossee salamander (Plethodon yonahlossee) is a large Southern Appalachian woodland salamander typically differentiated by its large size and its distinctive rust-colored dorsum. The species is a member of the family Plethodontidae, which is characterized by being lungless and reproductive direct development. P. yonahlossee was first described in 1917 by E.R Dunn on a collection site on Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina. The common and specific name is of Native American origin, meaning “trail of the bear”. It is derived from Yonahlossee Road northeast of Linville, where the specimen was first described. The yonahlossee’s back has a black base color and is covered by reddish-brown to red blotches depending on age. Typically, juveniles are more spotted, while in older individuals, the reddish blotches come together to form a wide band spanning the length of their backs. The sides of their bodies are covered with grey to white blotching, and the dorsal part of their heads is all black. The belly and throat are both pigmented, but sometimes have a similar blotched pattern as the back. P. yonahlossee is the largest member of the family Plethodontidae in North America. Females are significantly larger than males. The typical adult length is between 11 and 22 cm. Typically, the yonahlossee has 15 or 16 costal grooves. #hiking#nighthiking#nature#naturelovers#blueridgemountains#herping#herpetofauna#salamanders#amphibians#appalachian#mountains#holstonmountain#wildlife#photography#plethodontidae#lunglesssalamanders#easttennessee#real#field#herpetology#beauty#biology#science#biodiversity#salamandersofinstagram#plethodon#yonahlossee#salamander#lifelonghikers
Another species from Nantahala, this sticky little fella is known as Plethodon glutinosus, the aptly named slimy salamander. Similar to most salamanders, when threatened, they excrete a sticky, noxious substance from their body. Most salamanders excrete from their tails, but glutinosus excretes all over and is much more sticky than others. On the right night, these guys can easily be found moving around on the hunt for food after dusk. #plethodon#salamander#slimysalamander
Sorry for not posting recently. I have been transitioning and adjusting to being back in VA and getting a new job and what not. Hopefully I will be more consistent in posting and finding time to explore Northern VA wildlife and the rest of VA. Here is a photo of a White-spotted Slimy Salamander (Plethodon cylindraceus) a friend of mine and I found while hiking in the GR Thompson State Wildlife Management Area.
A Coeur D'Alene Salamander (Plethodon idahoensis) I found on my trek out to Montana. These cute little dudes can be found pretty close to water which is weird for a Plethodon. #SalamanderSaturday#Plethodon#CoeurDAlene
One of the cooler things we observed in VA was how active the salamanders were after a rain event. Even the stream-dwelling species were crawling around, wth some even climbing up into trees and other vegetation to look for prey. They were good at it too!
Sub-adult Dunn's Salamander (Plethodon dunni). Del Norte County, July 2017. .
I spent an afternoon in Del Norte county a couple days ago trying to knock one of the last CA north coast salamander species off my life list. Despite the relatively hot day and being at the absolute edge of the southern end of their range, I ended up being rewarded with my target! No adults showed face that day but I did manage to see a mix over a dozen juvenile and subadult animals before I called it quits.
A silver-backed salamander, a rare variation of the eastern red backed salamander which is one of the most numerous salamanders in North America. Their large population allows for large amounts of genetic variation such as the lead back phase, brown back phases, silver back phases and even "stary night" phased salamanders
A small mountainous area in North Georgia provides for great views of the surrounding flatlands. It also provides for a distinct salamander only found on the limestone outcroppings and twilight zones of caves on one slope of a single mountain. This tiny range explains why the salamander wasn't even discovered until 1972. I found almost a dozen Pigeon Mountain Salamanders (Plethodon petraeus) in a few hours looking. With unique habitat and great views, I'll definitely be back to explore the area more
The South Mountain Gray-cheeked Salamander (Plethodon meridianus) was the first salamander from the trip I took with my dad. This species is the smallest ranging of the jordani complex. #SalamanderSaturday#Appalachia#Plethodon