Two-lined Salamander

(Eurycea bislineata spp.)

Distribution of the Northern (top) and Southern (bottom)

Two-lined Salamanders (from the AR MI Atlas)

The Northern Two-lined Salamander, Eurycea b. bislineata, (top) and Southern Two-lined Salamander, Eurycea b. cirrigera, (bottom).

Description: A small (3-5”) stream-side salamander with a yellowish green to yellowish brown ground color. Two lines (hence the name) extend from the eye down to about one-half the length of the tail (Northern subspecies) or to the tip of the tail (Southern subspecies). There are usually dark spots scattered between the two lines (Northern) or along the sides of the body (Southern). The underside is bright yellow.
Distribution in Ohio: The Northern Two-lined Salamander (E. b. bislineata) appears to be limited to the north of a line extending from central Knox County to central Jefferson County. The Southern Two-lined Salamander (E. b. cirrigera) occurs south of this line. Breeding between the two subspecies does occur.
Status in Ohio: Widespread and locally abundant.
Habitat: Headwater streams, small creeks, springs, and seeps, where they may be found under rocks, logs, and leaf litter at the water’s edge. Sometimes found away from water, in adjacent wet forests.
Life history: Thirty or more eggs are laid in May, submerged underwater and attached to the underside of a rock. The larvae hatch one month later and remain in the aquatic larval stage until metamorphosis two years later. Sexual maturity is reached at 2-4 years.
Conservation: Populations of Two-lined Salamanders are most threatened by destruction, disturbance, or pollution of their small aquatic habitats, including streams and seeps. Pollution, runoff, and stream channelization and scouring are all major threats to these habitats in Ohio. Removal of forests around streams and seeps increases siltation, water temperature, and evaporation, and alters the prey base and foraging opportunities for the species.

Last modified:
Thursday, May 05, 2005

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