Amphiuma means - Garden, 1821
Two-toed Amphiuma
Other English Common Names: two-toed amphiuma
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Amphiuma means Garden in Smith, 1821 (TSN 173609)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.104318
Element Code: AAAAB01010
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Amphibians - Salamanders
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Amphibia Caudata Amphiumidae Amphiuma
Genus Size: B - Very small genus (2-5 species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Frost, D. R. 1985. Amphibian species of the world. A taxonomic and geographical reference. Allen Press, Inc., and The Association of Systematics Collections, Lawrence, Kansas. v + 732 pp.
Concept Reference Code: B85FRO01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Amphiuma means
Taxonomic Comments: Electrophoretic studies of 24 presumptive genetic loci indicated a high level of genetic similarity between A. means and A. tridactylum and a much greater dissimilarity between A. pholeter and A. tridactylum (Karlin and Means 1994).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 17Dec2001
Global Status Last Changed: 17Dec2001
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: N5 (05Nov1996)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (S3), Florida (SNR), Georgia (S5), Louisiana (S3S4), Mississippi (S4S5), North Carolina (S4), South Carolina (SNR), Virginia (S4)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 200,000-2,500,000 square km (about 80,000-1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Coastal Plain from southeastern Virginia to Florida and eastern Louisiana.

Number of Occurrences:  
Number of Occurrences Comments: Many occurrences.

Population Size: 10,000 - 1,000,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Total adult population size is unknown but surely exceeds 10,000 and may exceed 100,000.

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Unknown

Overall Threat Impact: Medium
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Widespread loss of wetlands undoubtedly has eliminated many local populations, but the species remains common in many other areas (Petranka 1998).

Short-term Trend: Unknown

Long-term Trend: Unknown
Long-term Trend Comments: Long-term population trends have not been documented (Petranka 1998).

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Moderately vulnerable to not intrinsically vulnerable.

Environmental Specificity: Moderate. Generalist or community with some key requirements scarce.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (200,000-2,500,000 square km (about 80,000-1,000,000 square miles)) Coastal Plain from southeastern Virginia to Florida and eastern Louisiana.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
Endemism: endemic to a single nation

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, VA

Range Map
Note: Range depicted for New World only. The scale of the maps may cause narrow coastal ranges or ranges on small islands not to appear. Not all vagrant or small disjunct occurrences are depicted. For migratory birds, some individuals occur outside of the passage migrant range depicted. For information on how to obtain shapefiles of species ranges see our Species Mapping pages at www.natureserve.org/conservation-tools/data-maps-tools.

Range Map Compilers: IUCN, Conservation International, NatureServe, and collaborators, 2004


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AL Baldwin (01003)*, Covington (01039)*, Henry (01067)*, Houston (01069)*, Macon (01087)*, Mobile (01097), Monroe (01099)*, Montgomery (01101)*, Pike (01109)*, Washington (01129)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
03 Chipola (03130012)+*, Yellow (03140103)+*, Perdido (03140106)+*, Perdido Bay (03140107)+*, Upper Choctawhatchee (03140201)+*, Pea (03140202)+*, Lower Tallapoosa (03150110)+*, Lower Alabama (03150204)+*, Lower Tambigbee (03160203)+, Mobile - Tensaw (03160204)+*, Mobile Bay (03160205)+*, Mississippi Coastal (03170009)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Reproduction Comments: Timing of egg deposition is not well known; reportedly eggs are laid in January-February in the north, June-July in the south. Female remains with eggs during most of incubation (about 5 months). Eggs hatch after inundation (Gunzburger 2003). Free-living larval stage may sometimes be absent (Gunzburger 2003).
Ecology Comments: Snakes of genus FARANCIA are the major predators.
Non-Migrant: Y
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Mobility and Migration Comments: In Florida, an adult Amphiuma means was found dead at a drift fence 250 m from the nearest pool of a drying lake, from which it probably departed while seeking another water body (Aresco 2002).
Riverine Habitat(s): CREEK, Low gradient, MEDIUM RIVER
Lacustrine Habitat(s): Shallow water
Palustrine Habitat(s): FORESTED WETLAND, HERBACEOUS WETLAND, Riparian, TEMPORARY POOL
Special Habitat Factors: Benthic, Burrowing in or using soil
Habitat Comments: Swamps, bayous, margins of muddy sloughs, cypress heads, drainage ditches, sluggish streams, wet meadows, muddy lakes; soft substrate for burrowing or thick aquatic vegetation important for shelter. Often uses crayfish burrows. May leave water, especially on rainy nights; sometimes found under objects at water's edge. Eggs have been found under objects in damp places near the water's edge and in chambers in sediments where the water has receded. Eggs appaear to be specialized for development in terrestrial nest chambers (Gunzburger 2003).
Adult Food Habits: Carnivore, Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Carnivore, Invertivore
Food Comments: Eats insects, crayfish, mollusks, worms, fishes, and small amphibians and reptiles obtained mostly in shallow water.
Adult Phenology: Nocturnal
Immature Phenology: Nocturnal
Length: 76 centimeters
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation
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Use Class: Not applicable
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Occurrences are based on evidence of historical presence, or current and likely recurring presence, at a given location. Such evidence minimally includes collection or reliable observation and documentation of one or more individuals (including larvae or eggs) in or near appropriate habitat where the species is presumed to be established and breeding.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 1 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 10 km
Separation Justification: There are no available data on movements, but these salamanders probably move significant distances within suitable habitat and may occasionally move overland on rainy nights or when their habitat dries up. For example, in Florida, an adult Amphiuma means was found dead at a drift fence 250 m from the nearest pool of a drying lake, from which it probably departed while seeking another water body (Aresco 2002). The separation distance for unsuitable habitat reflects the nominal minimum of 1 km. The separation distance for suitable habitat reflects the high likelihood that amphiuma locations up to at least 10 km apart are part of the same population if the intervening area is suitable habitat. For occupied locations more than 10 km apart, existence of a single occurrence becomes increasingly uncertain.
Inferred Minimum Extent of Habitat Use (when actual extent is unknown): .3 km
Date: 13Feb2003
Author: Jackson, D. R., and G. Hammerson
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 17Dec2001
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Hammerson, G.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 04Jan2004
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Hammerson, G.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Aresco, M. J. 2002. Amphiuma means. Overland migration. Herpetological Review 33:296-297.

  • Bartlett, R. D., and P. P. Bartlett. 1999b. A field guide to Florida reptiles and amphibians. Gulf Publishing Company, Houston, Texas. xvi + 278 pp.

  • Behler, J. L., and F. W. King. 1979. The Audubon Society field guide to North American reptiles and amphibians. Alfred A. Knopf, New York. 719 pp.

  • Blackburn, L., P. Nanjappa, and M. J. Lannoo. 2001. An Atlas of the Distribution of U.S. Amphibians. Copyright, Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana, USA.

  • Cliburn, J.W. 1976. A key to the amphibians and reptiles of Mississippi. Fourth edition. Mississippi Museum of Natural Science, Jackson, Mississippi. 71 pp.

  • Conant, R. and J. T. Collins. 1991. A field guide to reptiles and amphibians: eastern and central North America. Third edition. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Massachusetts. 450 pp.

  • Cook, F.A. 1957. Salamanders of Mississippi. Mississippi Game and Fish Commission Museum. 28 pp.

  • Crother, B. I. (editor). 2008. Scientific and standard English names of amphibians and reptiles of North America north of Mexico, with comments regarding confidence in our understanding. Sixth edition. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles Herpetological Circular 37:1-84.

  • Dundee, H. A., and D. A. Rossman. 1989. The amphibians and reptiles of Louisiana. Louisiana State University Press, Baton Rouge.

  • Dundee, H.E., and D.A. Rossman. 1989. The amphibians and reptiles of Louisiana. Louisiana State University Press, Baton Rouge. 300 pp.

  • Frost, D. R. 1985. Amphibian species of the world. A taxonomic and geographical reference. Allen Press, Inc., and The Association of Systematics Collections, Lawrence, Kansas. v + 732 pp.

  • Gunzburger, M. S. 2003. Evaluation of the hatching trigger and larval ecology of the salamander Amphiuma means. Herpetologica 59:459-468.

  • KNEPTON, J. C., JR. 1954. A NOTE ON THE BURROWING HABITS OF THE SALAMANDER AMPHIUMA MEANS. COPEIA 1954(1):68

  • Karlin, A. A., and D. B. Means. 1994. Genetic variation in the aquatic salamander genus Amphiuma. Am. Midl. Nat. 132:1-9.

  • Lohoefener, R. and R. Altig. 1983. Mississippi herpetology. Mississippi State University Research Center, NSTL Station, Mississippi. 66 pp.

  • Martof, B. S., W. M. Palmer, J. R. Bailey, and J. R. Harrison, III. 1980. Amphibians and reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia. University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. 264 pp.

  • Mirarchi, R.E., editor. 2004. Alabama Wildlife. Volume 1. A checklist of vertebrates and selected invertebrates: aquatic mollusks, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. The University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 209 pages.

  • Mount, R. H. 1975. The reptiles and amphibians of Alabama. Auburn University Agricultural Experiment Station, Auburn, Alabama. vii + 347 pages.

  • Mount, R. H. 1975. The reptiles and amphibians of Alabama. Auburn University Agricultural Experiment Station, Auburn, Alabama. vii + 347 pp.

  • Petranka, J. W. 1998. Salamanders of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C.

  • SEYLE, C. W. JR. 1985. LIFE HISTORY NOTES: AMPHIUMA MEANS. REPRODUCTION. HERP. REV. 16(2):52-53

  • SEYLE, W., AND G. K. WILLIAMSON. 1988 (IN PREP). REPTILES AND AMPHIBIANS OF GEORGIA: RANGE MAPS

  • Salthe, S.N. 1973. Amphiuma means. Catalogue of American Amphibians and Reptiles. 148:1-2.

  • Tobey, F. J. 1985. Virginia's amphibians and reptiles: a distributional survey. Virginia Herpetological Survey. vi + 114 pp.

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Citation for Bird Range Maps of North America:
Ridgely, R.S., T.F. Allnutt, T. Brooks, D.K. McNicol, D.W. Mehlman, B.E. Young, and J.R. Zook. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Birds of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

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