Necturus lewisi - Brimley, 1924
Neuse River Waterdog
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Necturus lewisi Brimley, 1924 (TSN 173627)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.100341
Element Code: AAAAE01030
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Vertebrates - Amphibians - Salamanders
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Craniata Amphibia Caudata Proteidae Necturus
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: Necturus lewisi
Taxonomic Comments: See Maxson et al. (1988) for information on Necturus phylogeny based on albumin analysis. Genetically most closely related to N. punctatus (Guttman et al. 1990).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G2
Global Status Last Reviewed: 18Apr2013
Global Status Last Changed: 18Apr2013
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by calculator
Rounded Global Status: G2 - Imperiled
Reasons: Small range but widely distributed in the Neuse and Tar river drainages, North Carolina; probably declining as a result of degraded water quality; dams are a potential threat.
Nation: United States
National Status: N2 (18Apr2013)

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 North Carolina (S2)

Other Statuses

IUCN Red List Category: NT - Near threatened

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 5000-200,000 square km (about 2000-80,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Range includes the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico river basins of the Piedmont and Coastal Plain, North Carolina (Petranka 1998).

Area of Occupancy: 126-500 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments: Occurs in hundreds of stream miles (H. LeGrand, pers. comm., 1997).

Number of Occurrences:  
Number of Occurrences Comments: This species is known from over 100 locations, but these do not all represent distinct occurrences (H. LeGrand, pers. comm., 1997).

Population Size: Unknown
Population Size Comments: May be locally abundant at certain sites (Bury et al. 1980).

Overall Threat Impact: High
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Threats include water development projects (e.g., impoundments, stream channelization), pollution from agricultural runoff, hog farm wastes, pesticides, etc., and industrial and urban development (Bury et al. 1980; Braswell and Ashton 1985; Braswell 1989; H. LeGrand, pers. comm., 1997). A significant portion of the habitat in the upper Neuse drainage has been destroyed or degraded (Braswell 1989), and continued development threatens additional habitat.

Short-term Trend: Decline of 10-30%
Short-term Trend Comments: Abundance may be declining due to declining water quality, but the rate of decline is uncertain.

Long-term Trend: Decline of 10-50%

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Moderately vulnerable

Environmental Specificity: Very narrow to narrow.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Inventory Needs: Determine current distribution and abundance.

Distribution
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Global Range: (5000-200,000 square km (about 2000-80,000 square miles)) Range includes the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico river basins of the Piedmont and Coastal Plain, North Carolina (Petranka 1998).

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 state or province

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States NC

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)
NC Beaufort (37013)*, Craven (37049), Durham (37063), Edgecombe (37065), Franklin (37069), Granville (37077), Greene (37079), Halifax (37083), Johnston (37101), Jones (37103), Lenoir (37107), Nash (37127), Orange (37135), Person (37145), Pitt (37147), Vance (37181), Wake (37183), Warren (37185), Wayne (37191), Wilson (37195)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
03 Upper Tar (03020101)+, Fishing (03020102)+, Lower Tar (03020103)+*, Pamlico (03020104)+*, Upper Neuse (03020201)+, Middle Neuse (03020202)+, Contentnea (03020203)+, Lower Neuse (03020204)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: An aquatic salamander.
Reproduction Comments: Eggs probably laid in spring, hatch in June-July. Sexual maturity attained in about 6 years. Paedomorphic.
Habitat Type: Freshwater
Non-Migrant: Y
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Riverine Habitat(s): BIG RIVER, Low gradient, MEDIUM RIVER, Moderate gradient
Special Habitat Factors: Benthic, Fallen log/debris
Habitat Comments: Stream dweller requiring relatively high oxygen levels and water quality (Ashton 1990). Among large accumulations of submerged leaves in eddies, or backwaters of streams (Bury et al. 1980). Eggs are attached to underside of objects in water.
Adult Food Habits: Invertivore
Immature Food Habits: Invertivore
Food Comments: Known to eat crayfish, snails, and insects.
Phenology Comments: Seldom observed in summer.
Length: 28 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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Group Name: Proteid Salamanders (Waterdogs)

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 Barriers: Dams and impoundments (except N. maculosus); upland habitat
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 1 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 10 km
Separation Justification: These salamanders are strictly aquatic and cannot cross upland habitat. With the exception of N. maculosus, these salamanders are unlikely to successfully traverse an impoundment to reach suitable habitat downstream from a dam, unless the impoundment is very small. Because waterdogs do not climb and probably cannot use fishways, virtually all dams constitute a barrier to upstream movements.

Heavily silted or polluted streams may constitute a barrier or at least unsuitable habitat, depending on the severity of the conditions.

Based on data for the hellbender (Cryptobranchus allegheniensis), home ranges probably tend to be small, but information on periodic long-range movements, dispersal distances, and recolonization ability is not available.

The separation distance for unsuitable habitat reflects the nominal minimum value of 1 km. The 10-km separation distance for suitable habitat reflects the ease of movement and dispersal along riverine habitats and the likely low probability than locations separated by less than 10 km of suitable habitat would represent independent populations.

Inferred Minimum Extent of Habitat Use (when actual extent is unknown): .1 km
Date: 15Mar2004
Author: Hammerson, G.
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: 18Apr2013
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Hammerson, G.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 20Dec1989
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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  • Ashton, Jr, R.E. 1985. Field and laboratory observations on microhabitat selection, movements, and home range of Necturus lewisi (Brimley). Brimleyana. 10:83-106.

  • Ashton, Jr, R.E. 1990. Necturus lewisi. Catalogue of American Amphibians and Reptiles. 456:1-2.

  • 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.

  • Braswell, A. L. 1989. Scientific council report on the conservation status of North Carolina amphibians and reptiles. Submitted to : Nongame Advisory Committee, North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.

  • Braswell, A. L., and R. E. Ashton, Jr. 1985. Distribution, ecology, and feeding habits of Necturus lewisi (Brimley). Brimleyana 10:13-35.

  • Bury, R. B., C. K. Dodd, Jr., and G. M. Fellers. 1980. Conservation of the Amphibia of the United States: a review. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Washington, D.C., Resource Publication 134. 34 pp.

  • Conant, R., and J. T. Collins. 1998. A field guide to reptiles and amphibians: eastern and central North America. Third edition, expanded. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, Massachusetts. 616 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.

  • Guttman, S.I., L.A. Weight, P.A. Moler, R.E. Ashton, Jr., B.W. Mansell and J. Peavy. 1990. An electrophoretic analysis of Necturus from the southeastern United States. Journal of Herpetology. 24:163-175.

  • 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.

  • Maxson, L. R., P. E. Moler, and B. W. Mansell. 1988. Albumin evolution in salamanders of the genus NECTURUS. Journal of Herpetology 22:231-235.

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

  • Sessions, S.K. and Wiley, J.E. 1985. Chromosome evolution in salamanders of the genus Necturus. Brimleyana. 10:37-52.

  • Viosca, P., Jr. 1937. A tentative revision of the genus Necturus, with descriptions of three new species from the southern Gulf drainage area. Copeia 1937:120-138.

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