Two-lined Salamanders


 

Northern Two-lined Salamander (Eurycea bislineata)

Southern Two-lined Salamander (Eurycea cirrigera)

There are 2 sibling species of two-lined salamanders in West Virginia, Northern Two-lined and Southern Two-lined.  Both of these nearly identical species are about 4 inches long and have a dorsal color that varies from dull greenish-yellow to bright orange-yellow.  They have a light dorsal stripe bordered on each side by dark lines that start at the eyes and extend onto the tail.  These black lines extend less than half way down the tail on Northern Two-lined Salamanders and more than half way on Southern Two-lined Salamanders.  Costal groove counts are different between the 2 species with 15-16 on northern two-lines and 13-14 on southern two-lines.  Undersides of the body and legs of both species are yellow or orange yellow. 

 Two-lined salamanders are found in or near small streams with rocky bottoms, seepages, and flood plains.  They are frequently found under rocks and logs in forests.

 In March and April, 35 to 60 eggs are either attached to the undersides of rocks or broadcast among small rocks and sand on the 1 to 2 months and larvae transform in 1 to 3 years.

 Generally, Northern Two-lined Salamanders occur in the northeastern one-third of the state and Southern Two-lined Salamanders in the southwestern two-thirds.

 

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