Thursday, April 21, 2011

Salamander Nursery

These photos were taken on March 19, 2011 at an old pond situated in the woods at a nearby state park where I'm working as a seasonal naturalist. I have the pleasure of studying the different stages of nature as they occur in the various microclimates and habitats in the park. I had a hunch that salamanders might breed in this old pond as it functions quite like a vernal pool. Sure enough the pond was dotted with slimy globs embedded with black eggs. I wasn't sure if they were frogs or salamanders, but later I found that my photos matched the images of eggs laid by the Spotted Salamander. This is a common salamander, but one who could become endangered as its woodland habitat becomes scarcer due to development and as climate change makes vernal pools dry up.

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