Mudpuppy   

Necturus maculosus
 

State Listing: Special Concern

Commonly Confused Native Species:

 

  • Often Not Confused with other Species

IDENTIFICATION

 

Size:                  A large sized salamander measuring 7.8 to 17 inches in

                           length with permanent bushy gills and a fin-like tail.

                           Connecticut's largest and fully aquatic salamander. 

 

Color:                The dorsum is olive in color with blackish mottling.  They

                           have prominent reddish bushy gills.  The venter is a

                           whitish gray in color.        

 

Behavior:         Fast to escape predators using a specialized sensory

                           system, the lateral line, which aids in the detection of

                           water pressure changes.  If faced with danger they

                           secrete a toxin for defense.  Sometimes called

                           waterdogs because of a "bark-like" squeak they make.          

Habitat:            In Connecticut the mudpuppy seems restricted to the

                          Connecticut and Housatonic river drainages.         

 

Created and Maintained by Dennis P. Quinn

© 2020 Connecticut Herpetology

Common Mudpuppy

Note external gills.