Description: Jordan's salamanders range in size from 3.5
to 5 in (9-12.5 cm) with a record of 7.5 in (18.4cm). Their basic
body color is gray or black but they may have red legs or cheek
patches. Generally, individuals from the southern Appalachian
Mountains have red legs and individuals from the Smokeys and central
Blue Ridge of North Carolina and Tennessee have both red legs
and red cheek patches. In other regions they are solid gray or
black. Coastal grooves are present and usually number 16. They
are generally smaller and more slender in body form than the
similar slimy salamanders (P. glutinosus complex) and lack
Range and Habitat: Jordan's salamanders are woodland salamanders
that are also mountain dwellers. They are found in the Appalachian
Mountains from Virginia to northern Georgia and South Carolina.
They are found from 700ft elevation to the summits of humid, forested
areas in the Appalachian Mountains. This species is one of the
most common woodland salamanders in the Appalachians.
Habits: Jordan's Salamanders are most commonly found under
rock and logs in moist forests. They are active at night when
they emerge to hunt insects and other invertebrates. They breed
in the fall and do not have an aquatic larval stage.
Notes: Recent systematic work has split this species into
several closely-related species. P. shermani is found in
the Southern Appalachians of our region, P. metcalfi is
found in the Smokeys and central Blue Ridge of North Carolina
Conservation Status: Red-legged salamanders are common
within their range and are not protected in Georgia.
Rollmann, Stehpanie M. 2003. Conspecific and heterospecific
pheromone effects on female receptivity. Animal Behaviour 2003
November; 66(5): 857-861.
Account Author: Andy Howington, University of Georgia
- revised by J.D. Willson