Description: Blind Salamanders are fairly small -- 2-3
in. in (5.1-7.6 cm), paedomorphic (adults remain aquatic and
retain larval characteristics) salamanders that are highly
adapted to life in caves. They have no eyes and little
pigment on their body, making them pinkish white in color and
somewhat iridescent. They have long, red external gills,
a broad head, and skinny legs. Have 12-13 costal grooves.
They look somewhat similar to the Tennessee Cave Salamander (Gyrinophilus
palleucus) and are most easily differentiated from this species
Range and Habitat: Georgia Blind Salamanders are endemic
to our region and are only found in a small section of southwest
Georgia and adjacent Florida. However, the inaccessible habitat
inhabited by this species (underground caves and springs) means
that its true range is poorly documented. This species lives in
caves and aquifers and is almost never seen above ground.
Habits: Not much is known about reproductive strategies
or other behaviors. This species may depend on guano from associated
Conservation Status: H. wallacei is state listed
as threatened because of its restricted range and specific habitat
requirements. The IUCN lists it as vulnerable.
Lee, D. S. 1969. A food study of the salamander Haideotriton
Account Author: Christina Baker, University of Georgia
- edited by J.D. Willson