STATUS: Endangered without critical habitat.|
DESCRIPTION: A troglobitic (cave-dwelling) salamander that is white or pinkish with blood-red external gills and toothpick-like legs; translucent skin reveals internal organs. Head and snout are strongly flattened with two small black dots representing vetigial eyes under the skin. The front feet have four toes; the back feet have five toes. Adults are up to 4.7 inches long.
HABITAT: Underground aquifer system of the Edwards Plateau, where water temperature averages 21°C.
Present: San marcos Pool of the Edwards Aquifer in Hays County, Texas.
THREATS AND/OR REASONS FOR DECLINE:Changes in the Edward Aquifer from such things as increased water usage, urban growth, and pollution.
Historic: Known only from Hays County, Texas.
OTHER INFORMATION: Diet consists mainly of zooplankton, crustaceans, and snails. This salamander is aquatic throughout its life. Conservation of this salamander is linked to protection of the Edwards Aquifer.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. August 1992. Threatened and Endangered Species of Texas.
Endangered Species Office, Albuquerque, New Mexico