Hemidactylium scutatum

Four-toed Salamander

Hemidactylium scutatum Hemidactylium scutatum

Photos taken by C. Slesar.
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Distribution of Hemidactylium scutatum in Vermont

Distribution Map

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The Four-toed Salamander is one of our three small, slender salamanders along with the Red-backed and Northern Two-lined. It is our only terrestrial salamander that has four toes on its rear feet. Adults range from 3-4 inches long. Four-toeds have black flecks on a reddish-brown back and grayish-brown upper sides. Their belly and lower sides are bright white with black scattered spots.

Large, healthy adults have a constriction at the base of their tails, which is where their tail can break off if grabbed by a predator. It will later grow back.

The females lay 15-64 eggs in moss or debris near water.


This species is found generally in the Lake Champlain Basin, and has been identified in two locations in the Connecticut River Valley.


This species has a state natural heritage rank of S2. The Four-Toed Salmanader is rare in Vermont and is a species of special concern. It has been designated a Species of Greatest Conservation Need (high priority) in Vermont’s Wildlife Action Plan. Please report all sightings of this species in Vermont. Take photos if possible. Even historic sighting information is useful.

More Info

Species summary written by Kaile Burgess.

Hemidactylium scutatum: ventral view

Hemidactylium scutatum: ventral view

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