A large (7 inches; 17.8 cm) and stocky salamander. Black in color and speckled with white or yellowish white spots. When disturbed it secretes a wonderful glue that promptly sticks to anything that touches the animal, including your fingers, or the mouth of a garter snake. While the predator is attempting to remove the glue (and sticks and leaves stuck in the glue) the salamander escapes.
Direct development occurs in this species. Females deposit eggs under a log or rock in late spring. It can take at least 5 years for juveniles to mature and females may only breed every second year (see Klemens 1992).
Similar to adults, but with fewer spots.
Occurs in forested habitat with much ground cover in the form of rotting logs and flat rocks. It is usually found on hillsides. The author has found this species in Ohio under rocks on steep hillsides along mountain streams where Northern Spring Salamanders occur.
Though it has a wide range in the eastern United States, Connecticut appears to be at the edge of that range. In Connecticut its distribution is restricted to northwestern Fairfield County.
This species is threatened in Connecticut.
Conant, R. and J.T. Collins. 1991. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians: Eastern/Central North America. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. 450 pp.
Klemens, M.W. 1993. Amphibians and Reptiles of Connecticut and Adjacent Regions. Hartford, CT: State Geological and Natural History Survey of Connecticut Bulletin 112. 318 pp.
Text by Gregory J. Watkins-Colwell.
Photographs © Twan Leenders. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Animals featured in photographs on this page are from New York.