Amphibians and Reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia, 2nd edition by Alvin L. Braswell and Jeffrey C. Beane

15597c4258ed33f-261x361.jpg Author Alvin L. Braswell and Jeffrey C. Beane
Isbn 807833746
File size 13.4MB
Year 2010
Pages 288
Language English
File format PDF
Category animals


Amphibians and Reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia SECOND EDITION, REVISED AND UPDATED Amphibians Jeffrey C. Beane, Alvin L. Braswell, Joseph C. Mitchell, William M. Palmer, and Julian R. Harrison III Photographs by Jack Dermid With contributions by Bernard S. Martof and Joseph R. Bailey & REPTILES of the CAROLINAS and SECOND EDITION, REVISED AND UPDATED The University of North Carolina Press C H A P EL HI LL VIRGINIA This book was published © 2010 THE UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS with the All rights reserved assistance Designed by Kimberly Bryant with Giovanna de Graaff and set of Progress in Arnhem and Scala Sans by Tseng Information Systems, Inc. Energy. Manufactured in Hong Kong The paper in this book meets the guidelines for permanence and durability of the Committee on Production Guidelines for Book Longevity of the Council on Library Resources. The University of North Carolina Press has been a member of the Green Press Initiative since 2003. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Amphibians and reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia / Jeffrey C. Beane . . . [et al.] ; photographs by Jack Dermid ; with contributions by Bernard S. Martof and Joseph R. Bailey. — 2nd ed., rev. and updated. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 978-0-8078-3374-2 (cloth : alk. paper) — ISBN 978-0-8078-7112-6 (pbk. : alk. paper) 1. Amphibians—North Carolina—Identification. 2. Amphibians—South Carolina—Identification. 3. Amphibians—Virginia—Identification. 4. Reptiles—North Carolina—Identification. 5. Reptiles—South Carolina—Identification. 6. Reptiles—Virginia—Identification. I. Beane, Jeffrey C. QL653.N8A4 2010 597.90975—dc22 2009039268 cloth 14 13 12 11 10 paper 14 13 12 11 10 5 4 3 2 1 5 4 3 2 1 Our dear friend and colleague Julian R. Harrison III passed away during the later editing stages of the second edition of Amphibians and Reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia. The enduring contributions he made as a multidisciplinary naturalist, scientist, and educator, and the lives that he touched, are many. He achieved what most people hope to accomplish during their lives—to be loved by family and friends, to be relevant and appreciated for actions taken, and to be remembered for many positive accomplishments. This book is dedicated to the memory of Joseph R. Bailey, Julian R. Harrison III, and Bernard S. Martof. Their steadfast desire to pass along the natural history knowledge they had accumulated to students, colleagues, and the public was inspiring and fostered many others to pursue careers in the natural sciences. The importance of these men to science, to conservation of our natural resources, and to the betterment of humankind is tremendous. The discipline of herpetology and the natural sciences in general have been blessed by their presence and enduring legacy. Contents Introduction and Acknowledgments 1 The Area 15 A Brief History of Herpetology in the Carolinas and Virginia 29 List of Amphibians and Reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia 39 Amphibians (Class Amphibia) 45 Salamanders (Order Caudata) 45 Frogs and Toads (Order Anura) 119 Reptiles (Class Reptilia) 153 Crocodiles and Alligators (Order Crocodilia) 154 Turtles (Order Testudines = Chelonia) 157 Lizards and Snakes (Order Squamata) 184 Lizards (Suborder Sauria) 184 Snakes (Suborder Serpentes) 204 Glossary 257 Useful References 263 Photo Credits 267 Index 269 This page intentionally left blank Amphibians and Reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia SECOND EDITION, REVISED AND UPDATED This page intentionally left blank Introduction Amphibians and reptiles play critical roles in natural systems, and many are highly beneficial to humans. Although these animals have long appealed to amateur naturalists as well as professional zoologists, their remarkable diversity of shapes, sizes, colors, patterns, ecologies, and life histories remain poorly known to most of the public. They constitute what has been called “hidden biodiversity” because many species are secretive and are seen rarely or only when one is actively looking for them. In the past few decades, information about amphibians and reptiles has grown tremendously. The explosive spread of urban and suburban living and outdoor recreation has evoked a resurgence of interest in the identification, natural history, behavior, and distribution of plants and animals, especially amphibians and reptiles. This book was written to acquaint persons with these abundant and varied groups of animals that live in Virginia and the Carolinas and to encourage the growth of knowledge about and understanding of these organisms and their importance. We hope it will be a useful reference not only to herpetologists and other biologists and naturalists but to all persons concerned about the environment and the quality of life in our region. Virginia and North and South Carolina constitute a compact natural area bordered by the Appalachian Mountains to the west and northwest, the Atlantic Ocean to the northeast and southeast, and the Savannah River to the southwest. The region harbors a rich herpetofauna of some 189 species. This richness is due to several biogeographic patterns. A number of southern species have ranges extending northward through the Coastal Plain and terminating in this region. Several others have essentially northern distributions that reach their southernmost limit in the region. Numerous species (about a third of the total) have broad distributions in eastern North America, encompassing much of the mid-Atlantic region and occurring in all three states. A few species extend into the western part of the region via the Tennessee River drainage. And last, but certainly not least, some 40 salamander species have distributions centering on the Blue Ridge and Appalachian mountains. These overlapping distribution patterns 1 yield totals of some 111 amphibian and 78 reptile species known to occur in the tristate region. About 22 species occur areawide, or nearly so, and at least that many others inhabit two-thirds or more of the area. Furthermore, the area contains 11 endemic species and several others nearly restricted to it, thus providing numerous unique elements. A species includes a population or a group of populations whose members share many traits and are usually distinguishable from individuals of other species. Members of a species interbreed or are capable of interbreeding among themselves but are reproductively isolated from individuals of other species by a number of mechanisms (such as behavior). Some species are subdivided into geographic races, or subspecies. Such populations are morphologically or physiologically different and inhabit only a part of the total geographic range of the species. Only a few of the more conspicuous subspecies are mentioned in this book. The species here included are those generally recognized by most herpetologists; however, for questionable or controversial species, our choices of the alternatives (often not unanimous) are used. Divergence of opinion arises mainly because some species are in different stages of evolution, and because knowledge of many populations is so fragmentary. Many species are capable of becoming divided into geographically isolated populations, each of which may accumulate genetic differences and become morphologically or physiologically distinct over time. If such a population remains geographically isolated, its taxonomic status (whether it is an unusually distinct subspecies or a full-fledged species) is often a subjective judgment. However, if the populations in question overlap on the landscape, then their taxonomic status may be easily ascertained. If, in the zone of overlap, the parental phenotypes occur frequently and hybrids only occasionally, taxonomists conclude that barriers to interbreeding exist and that the populations are separate species. On the other hand, if most individuals in the central part of the zone of overlap have some of the diagnostic features of both parental forms, the populations are best classed as the same species. The problem of recognizing species is further exacerbated because some populations have become reproductively isolated (do not interbreed) but are phenotypically similar or identical (sibling or cryptic species). Numerous changes in the scientific names of amphibians and rep2 INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS tiles have occurred since the first edition of this book was published in 1980. This is largely due to the advances in molecular technology that provide insights into the genealogy of these animals. Changes in taxonomic names reflect advances in understanding genetic relationships among species or groups of species. Thus, taxonomy, the naming of species, is not a static science. Use of molecular technology has also caused scientists to rethink what constitutes a species. In short, how genetically different must a population be in order to be properly recognized as a full species? In some cases, especially in salamanders, species are recognized entirely by their genetic differences rather than by external characteristics we can see. Because of their limited mobility, salamanders are often more easily influenced by some of the factors (e.g., geographic barriers) that lead to speciation than are more mobile animals. See Table 1 for a listing of species added and name changes since publication of the first edition of this book in 1980. Taxonomy is often controversial, and not all published taxonomic changes are immediately universally accepted in the scientific community. Examples include Lithobates for Rana (true frogs), Anaxyrus for Bufo (toads), Plestiodon for Eumeces (skinks), and Pantherophis for Elaphe (rat snakes). Because this book is designed for a general audience, we decided to remain conservative and use the older, more established names. However, we have added in parentheses in the appropriate accounts the newer names for future reference based on the 2008 checklist of North American amphibians and reptiles published by the Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles. Names will continue to change as more and more groups are studied with modern techniques. In several of the accounts, we note that we anticipate that a particular species may undergo revision in the near future. In spite of numerous attempts to standardize the common names of amphibians and reptiles, much controversy remains. An obstacle to standardization, of course, is the deep entrenchment of different names for a species in various regions of the country. In general, our common names follow those recommended in 2008 by the Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles, but we have departed in a few cases where we believe our selections more appropriately describe the animal, or where we feel that retention of certain traditional, longstanding names would be more familiar and less confusing to most readers. All species featured in this book are native to the area, with the INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 3 TABLE 1 Species Added and Scientific Name Changes since the 1980 Edition Salamanders Desmognathus fuscus split into: Desmognathus conanti Desmognathus fuscus Desmognathus planiceps Desmognathus folkertsi Desmognathus marmoratus Spotted Dusky Salamander Northern Dusky Salamander Virginia Dusky Salamander Dwarf Black-bellied Salamander Shovel-nosed Salamander (formerly Leurognathus marmoratus) Desmognathus ochrophaeus split into: Desmognathus carolinensis Carolina Mountain Dusky Salamander Desmognathus ochrophaeus Allegheny Mountain Dusky Salamander Desmognathus ocoee Ocoee Salamander Desmognathus orestes Blue Ridge Dusky Salamander Desmognathus santeetlah Santeetlah Dusky Salamander Eurycea bislineata split into: Eurycea bislineata Northern Two-lined Salamander Eurycea cirrigera Southern Two-lined Salamander Eurycea wilderae Blue Ridge Two-lined Salamander Eurycea quadridigitata split into: Eurycea chamberlaini Chamberlain’s Dwarf Salamander Eurycea quadridigitata Dwarf Salamander Eurycea n. sp. “Sandhills Eurycea” Plethodon aureolus Tellico Salamander Plethodon glutinosus split into: Plethodon chattahoochee Chattahoochee Slimy Salamander Plethodon chlorobryonis Atlantic Coast Slimy Salamander Plethodon cylindraceus White-spotted Slimy Salamander Plethodon glutinosus Northern Slimy Salamander Plethodon variolatus South Carolina Slimy Salamander Plethodon teyahalee Southern Appalachian Salamander Plethodon jordani split into: Plethodon amplus Blue Ridge Gray-cheeked Salamander Plethodon cheoah Cheoah Bald Salamander Plethodon jordani Jordan’s Salamander Plethodon meridianus South Mountain Gray-cheeked Salamander Plethodon metcalfi Southern Gray-cheeked Salamander Plethodon montanus Northern Gray-cheeked Salamander Plethodon shermani Red-legged Salamander 4 INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Plethodon kentucki Plethodon sherando Plethodon ventralis Plethodon virginia Frogs Bufo fowleri Pseudacris crucifer Pseudacris feriarum Pseudacris kalmi Pseudacris ocularis Rana capito Turtles Apalone ferox Apalone spinifera Kinosternon baurii Pseudemys concinna Pseudemys rubriventris Trachemys scripta Lizards Hemidactylus turcicus Ophisaurus mimicus Snakes Heterodon platirhinos Lampropeltis getula Nerodia floridana Cumberland Plateau Salamander Big Levels Salamander Southern Zigzag Salamander (formerly P. dorsalis) Shenandoah Mountain Salamander Fowler’s Toad (formerly B. woodhousii fowleri) Spring Peeper (formerly Hyla crucifer) Upland Chorus Frog (formerly P. triseriata feriarum) New Jersey Chorus Frog Little Grass Frog (formerly Limnaoedus ocularis) Carolina Gopher Frog (formerly R. areolata) Florida Softshell (formerly Trionyx ferox) Spiny Softshell (formerly Trionyx spiniferus) Striped Mud Turtle River Cooter (formerly Chrysemys concinna and C. floridana) Red-bellied Cooter (formerly Chrysemys rubriventris) Yellow-bellied Slider (formerly Chrysemys scripta) Mediterranean Gecko Mimic Glass Lizard Eastern Hognose Snake (formerly H. platyrhinos) Eastern Kingsnake (formerly L. getulus) Florida Green Water Snake (formerly N. cyclopion) INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 5 exception of the Texas Horned Lizard, which has thrived in multiple established populations for several decades, and the Mediterranean Gecko, which has persisted in small colonies in all three states for several years. Small colonies of a few other nonnative species may have become established in our area as of this writing. The Brahminy Blind Snake, Rhamphotyphlops braminus, a tiny, parthenogenic (single-sex) species commonly transported with greenhouse plants, has been reported in parts of Richmond and Newport News, Virginia, and at least one specimen was found in a greenhouse in Wake County, North Carolina. The Chinese Softshell Turtle, Pelodiscus sinensis, has been reported from the Potomac River in northern Virginia. Mississippi Map Turtles, Graptemys (pseudogeographica) kohnii, have been found in several man-made reservoirs in central North Carolina. The Brown Anole, Anolis (= Norops) sagrei, has been reported from at least two localities in New Hanover County, North Carolina, and southeastern Virginia. Individual Cuban Treefrogs, Osteopilus septentrionalis, have been reported from several locations in the Carolinas, but no evidence of breeding has been noted. Whether these potentially invasive species will spread, maintain their populations in only small areas, or be extinguished remains to be determined. Although several other species have been introduced—in particular, such popular exotic pet species as the Green Iguana (Iguana iguana) and the Burmese Python (Python molurus) are found with increasing frequency as escaped or intentionally released individuals—none shows signs of establishing breeding populations. On the other hand, a nonnative race of a species native to our area (the Red-eared Slider, a subspecies of the native Yellow-bellied Slider, Trachemys scripta) has been widely introduced and is now well established in several localities. There is also evidence of intra-area and extra-area transport of native animals, chiefly the result of the use of amphibians as fish bait and reptiles as pets. More impressive changes in distributions of amphibians and reptiles are associated with agriculture, dam building, mining, coastal alterations, suburban development, and highway construction. No extinctions of our herpetofauna are known to have occurred in historical times, and we wish to keep it that way! On the other hand, numerous decreases in populations have occurred in many parts of the area due to habitat loss or other factors, and turbulent times lie ahead. This statement is as true today as it was when the first edition of this book appeared in 1980. Recognizing that humans have drastically altered habitats and 6 INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS eliminated many species, Congress passed the Endangered Species Act of 1973, and subsequent reauthorizations made a variety of changes. Each state also has its own endangered species law with its own list of endangered and threatened species. There are several compelling reasons why we must prevent the extinction of species: (1) We share with other organisms a common evolutionary heritage, and we find kinship, inspiration, and beauty in many of them. (2) Human populations are large, complexly interrelated, and vulnerable to extinction. We have much to gain from studies of other imperiled populations. (3) More practically, as genetic and biochemical resources, other organisms are indispensable in biological and medical research. Clearly, the most effective protection of endangered species is provided by preservation of their natural habitats. Not only do we need more large parks and wilderness areas, but many communities would benefit immeasurably by having their own programs of habitat preservation. To promote interest in our diminishing herpetofauna, we have listed those species requiring special protection in Table 2, which is based mainly on current state and federal listings. State listing criteria parallel, but seldom precisely mirror, federal criteria. Also, the levels of protection provided by state listing differ from federal levels and are usually less stringent. South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia all have legislation in place authorizing development of state listings for Endangered and Threatened species (South Carolina’s In Need of Management category is the equivalent of Threatened). North Carolina has an additional Special Concern category below Threatened. Endangered and Threatened are the only official federal categories. Roughly defined, the three levels of vulnerability to extinction are indicated: Endangered species are those in imminent danger of extinction; Threatened species have reduced populations in a large portion of their ranges and are likely to become Endangered if current trends continue; and species of Special Concern have a lesser degree of endangerment and may disappear from our area or are those about which only scant information is available. Even though federal and state laws impose heavy penalties for the possession, sale, or transport of several of these species, all need the maximum protection we can provide. State and federal listings are subject to change when new information becomes available or reevaluations occur, and the necessary legal processes are followed. The most recent listings should be sought out whenever there is a need to interact with a potentially INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 7 TABLE 2 Imperiled Species State Listings Federal Listings¹ Common Name SC² NC³ VA⁴ SC NC VA T Plethodon websteri Plethodon wehrlei Plethodon welleri Northern Dwarf Siren Hellbender Neuse River Waterdog Common Mudpuppy Flatwoods Salamander Mabee’s Salamander Mole Salamander Eastern Tiger Salamander Green Salamander Junaluska Salamander Long-tailed Salamander Dwarf Salamander Four-toed Salamander Crevice Salamander⁵ Shenandoah Salamander Southern Zigzag Salamander Webster’s Salamander Wehrle’s Salamander Weller’s Salamander Frogs Hyla andersonii Hyla gratiosa Pseudacris brachyphona Rana capito Rana heckscheri Pine Barrens Treefrog Barking Treefrog Mountain Chorus Frog Carolina Gopher Frog River Frog T Crocodilians Alligator mississippiensis American Alligator Turtles Sternotherus minor Clemmys guttata Clemmys insculpta Clemmys muhlenbergii Stripe-necked Musk Turtle Spotted Turtle T Wood Turtle Bog Turtle T Species Salamanders Pseudobranchus striatus Cryptobranchus alleganiensis Necturus lewisi Necturus maculosus Ambystoma cingulatum Ambystoma mabeei Ambystoma talpoideum Ambystoma tigrinum Aneides aeneus Eurycea junaluska Eurycea longicauda Eurycea quadridigitata Hemidactylium scutatum Plethodon longicrus Plethodon shenandoah Plethodon ventralis 8 INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS SC SC SC E T T SC T E T SC SC SC SC E E E SC E T SC T E SC T SC T T all T(S/A) SC T T E all T(S/A) State Listings Federal Listings¹ SC² NC³ VA⁴ SC NC VA Species Common Name Deirochelys reticularia Malaclemys terrapin Gopherus polyphemus Caretta caretta Chelonia mydas Eretmochelys imbricata Lepidochelys kempii Dermochelys coriacea Apalone spinifera spinifera Chicken Turtle Diamondback Terrapin Gopher Tortoise Loggerhead Sea Turtle Green Sea Turtle Hawksbill Sea Turtle Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle Leatherback Sea Turtle Eastern Spiny Softshell Lizards Eumeces anthracinus Ophisaurus mimicus Ophisaurus ventralis Coal Skink Mimic Glass Lizard Eastern Glass Lizard T Southern Hognose Snake Carolina Water Snake Smooth Green Snake Pine Snake Eastern Coral Snake Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake Timber Rattlesnake Pigmy Rattlesnake T Snakes Heterodon simus Nerodia sipedon williamengelsi Opheodrys vernalis Pituophis melanoleucus Micrurus fulvius Crotalus adamanteus Crotalus horridus Sistrurus miliarius E SC E T T E E E T T E E E SC T T E E E T T E E E T T E E E T T E E E SC T SC SC SC SC E E SC SC E⁶ ¹Federal official listings are Endangered (E) and Threatened (T) and can carry the designation S/A (similarity of appearance) for a species or population that is listed because it looks very similar to a listed species or population. ²South Carolina’s official state listing designations are Endangered (E) and In Need of Management (T) (the equivalent of Threatened). ³North Carolina’s official state listing designations are Endangered (E), Threatened (T), and Special Concern (SC). ⁴Virginia’s official state listing designations are Endangered (E) and Threatened (T). ⁵Considered by some to be a variant of Plethodon yonahlossee, Yonahlossee Salamander. ⁶Coastal Plain population only. INTRODUCTION AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 9

Author Alvin L. Braswell and Jeffrey C. Beane Isbn 0807833746 File size 13.4MB Year 2010 Pages 288 Language English File format PDF Category Animals Book Description: FacebookTwitterGoogle+TumblrDiggMySpaceShare Revised and updated to reflect the most current science, and including 30 new species, this authoritative and comprehensive volume is the definitive guide to the amphibians and reptiles of the Carolinas and Virginia. The new edition features 189 species of salamanders, frogs, crocodilians, turtles, lizards, and snakes, with updated color photographs, descriptions, and distribution maps for each species. It is an indispensable guide for zoologists, amateur naturalists, environmentalists, backpackers, campers, hikers, and everyone interested in the outdoors.     Download (13.4MB) Exploring The World Of Reptiles And Amphibians, 6-volume Set All About Boxer Dog Puppies R. D. Bartlett – Poison Dart Frogs: Facts and Advice on Care and Breeding A Field Guide To The Reptiles Of South-East Asia Reptiles And Amphibians Of The Pacific Islands: A Comprehensive Guide Load more posts

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