Eastern Newt

Notophthalmus viridescens


Eastern Newts can be a common sight throughout the eastern US. They can be found throughout the state of Mississippi in various bodies of water. The central newt is the only subspecies found in the state, outside of the extreme northeast area where they mix with the red-spotted newt (separate subspecies). This species is dark-brown/orange on the surface with a bright orange belly. The central subspecies may have small red spots on the back, and the belly is often dotted with black. Newts go through a life cycle involved a terrestrial “eft” stage, which may last for years before metamorphosing into an aquatic adult.

Eft stage newt, Forrest Co. (MS)

Identifying Traits

  • Bright orange belly with small black dots
  • Laterally compressed tail in adults
  • Terrestrial eft stage

Subspecies Present:

Central Newt (Notophthalmus viridescens louisianensis)


Various bodies of water including ponds, streams, lakes, swamps



Generally utilizes natural structures like rocks and logs for shelter, highly aquatic and rarely leaves water bodies


Various invertebrates

Aquatic adult, Polk Co. (AR)