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Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Little Orange Cuties
Two little orange cuties we saw on our hike. We almost always see the first one. It's a red eft, actually the juvenile form of the red-spotted newt. They are SO cute- one of our favorite finds. The adults are olive-green and live in the water. By then, they have no legs, and grow a much larger tail.
This one looks similar, but you can see they are not the same. This one has no spots. It has dark sides, with much more prominent grooves. Can you see how moist this one is? Bits of dirt and bark are even stuck to it. That's a real difference. The eft has dry, slightly rough skin. This is a red back salamander. Sorry about the hairy backdrop... it's Larry's arm.
Salamanders have no lungs, but breathe through their skin and the lining of the mouth, so they have to keep moist. They come out mostly at night. Newts are much more likely to be seen because they taste bad, and most predators leave them alone.