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South Central ARMI

Guide to Louisiana Amphibians

Marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum)

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  Image of Marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum)
  Photo: Jeromi Hefner
Click on the image to display a larger version.
  Range Map for Marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum)
  Range map source: USGS National Amphibian Atlas, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Chubby, cryptic, bluish black salamander with silver or white cross bands across dorsum and tail. Also known as the "banded salamander." Displays sexual dimorphism—bands are white in males and gray in females. Venter is unmarked and black. Ranges from 3.5 to 5 inches in length. Breeding occurs in the fall. Females produce eggs from late October to early December. Eggs are laid singly in dry depressions that fill with water and will not hatch until completely submerged in water. Females guard eggs until they hatch. Species can tolerate very dry conditions. Individuals hide throughout the year under logs and debris in wet woodlands and bottomlands. Very sluggish and will not try to escape when found. Eats snails, spiders, insects, and millipedes. Species found throughout Louisiana in wet woodlands and bottomlands outside of the coastal marshes.

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