Category Archives: amphibians

Salamanders under threat

By guest author Matt Ellerbeck
Yellow-Spotted Salamander. Photo by Matt Ellerbeck.
Yellow-Spotted Salamander. Photo by Matt Ellerbeck.
Although they are rarely given much thought, and often overlooked when they are, salamanders are in a terrible crisis. Around half of all the world's salamander species are listed as threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). These species are all facing a high risk of extinction. A further 62 species … Continue Reading ››

Wood Frogs

by Don Scallen
Wood Frog female laying eggs
Wood Frog female laying eggs
Behold the wood frog, an evolutionary masterwork. A soft bodied amphibian that survives the fury of Canadian winters as far north as Old Crow in the Yukon. In that cruelest of seasons, wood frogs lie quiescent in beds of leaves, biding time until snowmelt softens their stiff bodies. They protect their delicate cellular machinery by shunting water out … Continue Reading ››

Red-backed Salamander

by Don Scallen, Vice-President
Red-Backed Salamander
Red-Backed Salamander
They weigh about as much as a paper clip. Dew worms dwarf them. They are, by weight, the smallest vertebrates in Ontario. But what they lack in size they more than make up in numbers. Red-backed salamanders are abundant, outnumbering all of the reptiles, rodents and birds that share their forest habitat. Densities of red-backed salamanders have been estimated as 500 to 9000 … Continue Reading ››