Scientific name: desmognathus fuscus


Family: plethodontidae

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The northern dusky salamander does not have lungs or gills so oxygen is taken in or taken out by the skin and mouth. Salamanders are easily spotted of all native salamander but difficult to catch. they have a dark color, slippery, run with great speed, and are amazing jumpers. The northern salamander is 2.5-4.5 inches and it is in the Plethodontidae family.


The Northern Dusky salamander is found in saturated soil near streams or in seepages in forested areas. These salamanders also inhabit woodland creeks, and spring. They are found in the appalachian mountains especially in the great smoky mountains. The cool and damp mountain forest provides good habitat for all salamanders.

Predators and Prey

The northern dusky salamander eats insect larvae, sowbugs, and earthworms. The majority of salamanders and their larva are carnivores. The youngster take in insects and small invertebrates. THe large adults eat fish, snails, slugs, and worms.
Dusky salamanders have predators, including raccoons, birds, striped skunks, shrews family water snakes, garter snakes, spring salamanders and red salamanders. dusky Salamanders can move quickly and are high jumpers. They also have a slippery skin which makes catching them difficult.

Native or Invasive

Biologists found out that eight types of salamanders species live in the lake champlain basin but only one species, the striped chorus frog, is endangered in vermont.

Form vs. Function

The northern dusky salamander has a cool surprisingly body structure and function. A strong and healthy species with brown dorsum, pink-white underside, and a series of white dots along each side near where these two meet, the belly and flanks. Tail is flattened, ridged, and knife-like in cross section. A light line is visible from edge of eye to lower jaw. The hind limbs are are not seen larger than the front limbs. Small to medium size, 70-130 mm total length, males are larger than females.

Interesting Facts

adult and larva northern two-lined salamanders exhibit antipredatior behaviors. Sexual dimorphism exists in males and females, but is more strongly marked in the breeding season.

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