Plethodon albagula — Western Slimy Salamander
Yet another in the long series of species carved out of what used to be considered a single species, Plethodon glutinosus. I think of these as the "slender salamanders of the east" because, as with the slender salamanders, there are a large number of species distinguished primarily only by DNA differences.
Lost Maples State Natural Area is near the western edge of the westernmost "island" in the range of this species, the westernmost of the numerous species of slimy salamander. So this Western Slimy Salamander was really living up to its name. Other than that, it was mostly just hiding under a log.
Slimy salamanders get their name from their sticky skin secretions. These same secretions make it hard to get a photo of one that doesn't have stuff stuck to it.
This one might possibly be free of stuff stuck to it. And I might possibly have used my water bottle to make it so a few minutes earlier.
- Conant, R., Collins, J. T. 1998. Peterson Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern and Central North America, Third Edition, expanded
- Crother, B. I. (ed.) 2017. Scientific and Standard English Names of Amphibians and Reptiles of North America North of Mexico, with Comments Regarding Confidence in Our Understanding, Eighth Edition
- Petranka, J. W. 1998. Salamanders of the United States and Canada