Common Name: Red Hills Salamander
Scientific Name: Phaeognathus hubrichti
Family: Plethodontidae – Lungless Salamander family
Locations: United States – Alabama
Size: 10.5 inches (27 cm)
The Red Hills Salamander is the state amphibian of Alabama, the only state it can be found in. More specifically, it lives in the Red Hills region of southern Alabama, hence the name. They belong to the family Plethodontidae, the lungless salamanders, so they lack lungs. They stay underground most of their life, making them a fossorial species of salamander. Most of their life history is unknown due to them being fossorial.
What is known is that the Red Hills Salamander does not breed in water, but in their burrows. No mating displays or actually breeding as been observed. Females lay around 6-16 eggs at a time. The eggs hatch in around two months into tiny salamanders.
While the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List categorizes the salamander as endangered, the federal United States government only lists them as threatened. Because of this, most of their land is privately owned by paper companies, that clear cut their habitat for the wood. Luckily, the Nature Conservatory bought almost 2,000 acres of land to protect the salamanders.