Natural History Note – Salamander Crossings

Spotted salamanders may need help crossing the road. Photo from

On wet nights between March and mid-April, keep an eye out for salamanders and other amphibians moving from their winter resting places in the woods to vernal pools where they will breed and lay eggs. Common migrating species include red-backed salamanders, yellow-spotted salamanders, eastern newts, spring peepers, and wood frogs. Sometimes rarer species can also be seen like blue-spotted salamanders, Jefferson’s salamanders, or four-toed salamanders. To find the critters, pick out a good spot before hand, a low-traffic road with woods uphill on one side and wetlands below. Then head out on a wet evening with a flashlight, piece of cardboard, and camera to track the migration. Help the amphibians across the road in whatever direction they are heading by prodding them onto a piece of paper or cardboard and carrying them across. Keep track of what you find and send the information on to LCC Staff Scientist Mike Winslow at mikew@