The Jefferson Salamander is one of Vermont’s three mole salamanders. It grows to 7 inches long. This species has a solid gray-brown body with tiny white flecks on the belly and lower sides. It is a chunky salamander with strong legs, a wide head, and a laterally-compressed tail (like a fish). The head and snout are wider and longer in this species than in Blue-spotted Salamanders.
They usually lay their eggs in sausage-shaped gelatinous masses of 10-30 eggs.
This species has produced hybrids with the Blue-spotted Salamander; consequently, some individuals can be hard to identify.
Jefferson Salamanders are found scattered in low hilly regions of the state, in upland forests near semi-permanent pools.
This species has a state natural heritage rank of S2 (rare) and is a species of special concern in Vermont. The Jefferson Salamander has been designated a Species of Greatest Conservation Need (high priority) in Vermont’s Wildlife Action Plan. Please report all sightings of this species in Vermont. Take photos if possible. Even historic sighting information is useful.
Species summary written by Kaile Burgess.