Other Amphibian of the Week

Idaho Giant Salamander (Dicamptodon aterrimus)

Idaho Giant Salamander
by Robert Arkle

Common Name: Idaho Giant Salamander
Scientific Name: Dicamptodon aterrimus
Family: Dicamptodontidae – Pacific Giant Salamander family
Location: United States – Idaho and Montana
Size: 6.7 – 9.8 inches (17 – 25 cm), max – 13 inches (33 cm)

The Idaho Giant Salamander is a fairly large terrestrial salamander found in the Rocky Mountains under rocks and logs. They are capable of climbing up vegetation as much as 8 feet.

photo by Andy Kraemer

They are found near streams where they breed. Breeding takes place in both fall and spring. Females lay around 100 to 200 eggs and stay with the eggs to protect them until they hatch.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the salamander as Least Concern for Extinction due to their wide range and presumed large population. While only listed as Least Concern, logging and development in their habitat are a threat to their existence.

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