Spotted Salamander

Ambystoma maculatum


Spotted salamanders are medium-bodied mole salamanders found throughout a wide range of the US. Their known range covers the whole state, however, habitat degradation may be affecting their actual range. This species is easily identifiable with a black/gray body marked with small yellow or orange spots. Orange spots are generally reserved for the head and neck. These salamanders are winter breeders and make their way to fishless ponds and seasonal bodies of water to mate and lay eggs.

Adult male Spotted Salamander seen during a large breeding event, Forrest Co. (MS)

Identifying Traits

  • Chunky black/gray body with bright yellow or orange spots


Forested wetlands and swamps (Powell et al., 2016)


Spotted salamanders, like most mole salamanders, are rarely seen above ground outside of breeding seasons. They can occasionally be found under moist or rotting logs in areas they are prevalent.


Various small invertebrates

Adult female, Forrest Co. (MS)
Egg mass in a shallow seasonal wetland, Forrest Co. (MS)
Adult female near multiple egg masses, Forrest Co. (MS)
Spotted salamander as found, active on a rainy winter night, Forrest Co, (MS)
Closeup of head, Forrest Co. (MS)