STATUS: Endangered without critical habitat.|
DESCRIPTION: These salamanders are lungless and "breathe" through their skin which must remain moist at all times. They are about 3.1-5 cm long with a tail about the same laength. It has silver- or brass-colored flecks speckle its back, and its lighter-colored belly and throat have a maroon-to-choclate-brown cast. It has a relatively broad head. The pale gray brown tail sharply contrasts with salamander's belly<.p>
HABITAT: They live in an area that includes desert fan palm oasis, desert wash, and desert scrub habitats, at an elevation of about 760 m. They favor moist microhabitats found at the base of shaded, water-soaked, clifflike walls facing north or west.
Present: Only one popul;ation of dser slender salamaders has been confirmed. It ixest in Hidden Palms Canyon in the Sanat Rosa Mountains, Riverside County. May be another population along the nearby Guadalupe Creek.
THREATS AND/OR REASONS FOR DECLINE: alteration in flow of grounmdwater could be disastrous. Alterations could be created by direct pumping, water diversion, development in the 440 acre wsatershed above the salamander's canyon. Random catatastrophe is also big risk since population is so limited and so small.
Historic: Same as above.
OTHER INFORMATION: Approximately 500 desert salamanders are known to exist ina very limited area. It eats flies and ants and is believed to also eat arthropods. Breeding and courtship habe are unknown. Will wind up like a spring if threatened and may flip its tail high in the air. If the predator seizes the tail it will thrasha round giving the salamander a distraction to try to run away.
Life on the Edge. Biosystems Books 1994. Santa Cruz, California