Streamside Salamander, Ambystoma barbouri
Closely related to the Small-mouthed Salamander which is identical in appearance, the Streamside Salamander is found in scattered populations in Middle Tennessee, particularly in limestone habitats.
The Streamside Salamander is usually brownish-gray to grayish black with numerous small, light gray speckles that sometimes merge on the sides to form a lichen-like pattern. A medium-sized salamander at 4 to 5.5 inches, it has a stocky body and a small head.
Identical to the Small-mouth Salamander, it can be separated only by careful examination of its range and habitat. The Streamside Salamander is found in streams with limestone bedrock, not in pools and ditches as is the case with the Small-mouthed Salamander.
This species is found in upland forests close to streams.
Insects, other arthropods, slugs, worms, and aquatic crustaceans make up the diet of the Streamside Salamander.
The Streamside Salamander migrates to its breeding sites in the fall and has a prolonged breeding season that lasts from December to April.
Status in Tennessee:
Uncommon and found in sporadic populations in the mid-state area, primarily in limestone habitats.
Best places to see in Tennessee:
Streams with limestone beds in Middle Tennessee.
Conant, R. and Collins, J. 1998. Peterson Field Guides: Reptiles and Amphibians (Eastern/Central North America). Houghton Mifflin Company, New York. 616pp.