Added 16 May 2004.

The Family Plethodontidae: Lungless Salamanders

Genus Phaeognathus - Red-Hills Salamander

Phaeognathus is a monotypic genus. It can be distinguished from other desmognathid salamanders by its long body, greater number of costal grooves and overall dark colour that lacks patterning. However, its nocturnal behaviour and choice of habitat make it a less frequently seen species, and in fact it was only described in 1960.

Scientific Name Common Name Distribution Size Notes
P. hubrichti Red-Hills Salamander SE USA (Red Hills, Alabama) 4-8" avg, 10" max One of the longest Plethodontidae species. Its habitat is mainly cool, moist forested ravines, where it digs burrows in sandy loam over and around claystone rock (Conant and Collins). Nocturnal, it is seen most often at the mouth of its burrow. Description: elongated body, short legs, 20-22 costal grooves. Coloration: dorsally overall deep brown, slightly paler on snout, jaws and soles of limbs. Reproduction: no details available.


A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern and Central North America, R Conant and J T Collins, Peterson Field Guides, Houghton Mifflin, Boston/New York 1998.


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