Dendroboard banner

1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This Ambystomid larval could be 1 of 7 species.

1. Jefferson
2. Blue Spotted
3. Small Mouth
4. Silvery
5. Tremblay's
6. Spotted
7. Marbled

What do you guys/gals think?

Thanks!

JBear
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,318 Posts
I should note that the hybrids are no longer considered thier own "species"... they are simply referred to as polyploid populations. They can be very difficult to diagnose based solely on larval features and often require waiting for metamorphosis (in part as you can't use range to differentiate them as they have to coexist with one or more of the parental species). You may have to count teeth as well as count costal grooves. As noted before you may have to do a DNA analysis for a real analysis. If they won't let you take live animals, if there is a road nearby you may be able to collect road kills for DNA analysis.

Ed
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,747 Posts
MMM, delicious caudate roadkill! I had a photographer friend in upstate NY that did a huge series based on the Red Eft roadkills that he found be the hundreds near his house. Kind of tragic, really.

Take care, Richard.

I should note that the hybrids are no longer considered thier own "species"... they are simply referred to as polyploid populations. They can be very difficult to diagnose based solely on larval features and often require waiting for metamorphosis (in part as you can't use range to differentiate them as they have to coexist with one or more of the parental species). You may have to count teeth as well as count costal grooves. As noted before you may have to do a DNA analysis for a real analysis. If they won't let you take live animals, if there is a road nearby you may be able to collect road kills for DNA analysis.

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,605 Posts
MMM, delicious caudate roadkill! I had a photographer friend in upstate NY that did a huge series based on the Red Eft roadkills that he found be the hundreds near his house. Kind of tragic, really.

Take care, Richard.
That sort of reminds me that story about Greece shutting down a highway because it was covered in millions of frogs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,318 Posts
It isn't unheard of in the US.. Members of a number of conservation groups close roadways or form groups to move salamanders or anurans from one side of the road to the other.

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the feedback! I am pretty sure it is A. texanum. The larval was very far into development and not more than an inch yet. This would lead me to think tex, based on certain data I have read.

JBear
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Actually, the data was from The National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Reptiles and Amphibians. Which was released in 1979, and beyond that has some real flaws... It says A. texanum normally metamorph at 1 and 5/8". Is this accurate?

Thanks!

JBear
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,318 Posts
I'd have to dig out my copy of Petranka's book to double check but I do know that many ambystomids metamorph at a very small size in that range and that none of the ones I can think of off the top of my head come out of the water with any of the adult coloration. Usually the adult coloration doesn't come in until more than a month or two later.

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I went back to the pool to look for another larv. It was 2 days later. Apparently they fed on whatever they had come for. After 30 mins of serious dip-netting, nothing but piles of common tadpoles.

It is my theory the ambystomid larvs were there feeding on peeper tads as they approach metamorphosis. The ambystomids were floating about 2 inches under the surface, just under the tads gulping air. They looked like sharks! I was very let down that they had moved on to other parts of the vernal system.

I did find a 2" A. texanum at the side of the pool. He was very cool! Didn't have my camera that day...

JBear
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The plan is to go back out tomorrow and go into the woods deeper and do some dip-netting there. Where they were before was more or less a clearing. I think I will be able to spend more time out this time as well.

JBear
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Here are some more pics. Pigment is starting to show... Any guesses?

P.s. The last pic is for "shoots and googles"....LMAO!

JBear
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,451 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Update pics...

JBear
This larv is currently 1 and 3/8". The back fin has receeded a bit but the gills are still quite large. Any guesses as to what it is?

JBear
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,775 Posts
J, this thread inspired me to do some field herping this morning, it has literally been 15 years or so. I'll start up a relevant thread if I find anything cool... but thanks :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,170 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Gonna say texanum. Definitely not an opacum, doubt it's a spotted, and I doubt any of the other choices. You and I should go salamandering at some point. It's pretty much what I spent every weekend from March to early June doing this year. Frogs are great but salamanders are superior!


Gyrinophilus porphyriticus danielsi - Blue Ridge Spring Salamander by John P Clare, on Flickr
John-

I would love to take you to some spots, and would love to see where you have success as well! It would be a lot of fun! I am sure we would get some amazing pics! Let me know!

JBear
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Little guy is doing great, still fully aquatic with bushy gills. Perhaps conditions are too stable to force him into metamorph mode? Thanks!

JBear
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top