Species Dive 7: A bog, some moss, and four toes

The Four-toed Salamander (Hemidactylium scutatum) lives an enigmatic and secretive life among North Americas bogs and vernal pools. Four-toed salamanders are small, tend to be coppery or grayish in color, have a notable constriction at the base of the tail, and sport bright white bellies with black spots. And of course, they have four toes … Read more

Species Dive 5 – Desmognathus conanti: A common salamander of complicated classification

Desmognathus conanti, commonly referred to as the Spotted Dusky Salamander, is currently known to be a wide-ranging, stream-dwelling dusky salamander. In previous decades, this salamander underwent a few taxonomic revisions. Since then, some researchers have been using modern techniques to gradually build evidence that this species could be more than we thought. The Spotted Dusky … Read more

Species Dive 4 – Aneides aeneus: The green, cryptic climber of the Eastern U.S.

The Green Salamander may be one of the more interesting and intriguing amphibians of the eastern United States. Their pattern and coloration boldly contrast that of any other salamander native to their rocky plateau range. They spend most of their lives high above the ground. And their climbing ability is impressive. The Green Salamander is … Read more

Species Dive 2 – Desmognathus pascagoula: Muddy wetland endemic

For the first species in the spotlight for 2023, I decided to talk about one of the newest additions to biodiversity we know of in Mississippi. Desmognathus pascagoula, the Pascagoula Dusky Salamander, is the newest amphibian (described in 2022 by Pryon et al.) we know to inhabit Mississippi. This salamander was formerly a known as … Read more