Frosted flatwoods salamander

With its smooth, glistening skin, it’s like a walking jewel glimmering in the moonlight

FWC Fish and Wildlife Research Institute

This species is distinguished by its striking coloration: a silvery-gray or black base adorned with prominent white spots that offer a stark contrast, making it a visually distinctive amphibian. The frosted flatwoods salamander’s small head, short legs, and elongated tail are not just physical characteristics; they play a crucial role in the animal’s ability to burrow underground, a vital behavior for survival.

One of the most remarkable features of the frosted flatwoods salamander is its unique life cycle, characterized by a complex and fascinating metamorphosis. Beginning their lives as aquatic larvae, these creatures undergo significant physiological transformations that allow them to transition to a terrestrial existence. This metamorphosis includes the development of lungs for breathing air, a change in diet, and the loss of their gills. These adaptations are crucial for their survival on land as adults, highlighting the intricate relationship between their biology and the environment.

The habitat of the frosted flatwoods salamander is as unique as its life cycle. Predominantly found in the sandy, wetland ecosystems of the southeastern United States, these salamanders require specific conditions to thrive. Their habitats, commonly known as flatwoods, are characterized by a mix of pine forests and seasonal wetlands. These areas provide the necessary environment for their breeding and foraging activities. The seasonal wetlands, which fill with water during certain times of the year, are particularly crucial for the larval stage of the salamanders, offering them a habitat rich in food sources and protection from predators.


Population est.
United States
Florida, Georgia, South Carolina

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No