Herpetofauna: One Life's List

Notophthalamus viridescens louisianensis
Central Newt

Union Co., Illinois
October 1994

I am not very familiar with newts in the water, I know them better in their dry-land stage.  They are 'newts' in the water, and 'efts' on dry land.  Efts have dry, rough skin,and are found under objects and in the leaf litter of moist woodlands, but you can sometimes find them in the spring in fall by simply hunkering down and watching a small space of the forest floor.  Sooner or later, movement catches your eye, and sometimes its a small eft.

The life cycle is curious.  After hatching in water, the larvae depart for dry land, becoming efts; after a year or two or more, the efts return to the water, transform into breeding adults, or newts.  In some areas the eft stage is omitted, and the creatures remain in water.

To the right top is a southern Illinois specimen; below that is an Eft from Kentucky.







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