FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 16, 1997

Diana M. Hawkins or

Vicki M. Boatwright



FLATWOODS SALAMANDER WOULD BE THREATENED SPECIES UNDER PROPOSAL BY U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE

Flatwoods Salamander
(FWS Photo by J. Palis)
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to list the flatwoods salamander amphibian, as a threatened species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. The flatwoods salamander grows to a little more than 5 inches in length and eats large numbers of insects. It is black to chocolate brown in color with light, silvery gray lines forming a net-like or banded pattern across its body. The salamander is indigenous to the longleaf pine flatwoods of the lower southeastern United States.



The species was once found in Alabama, northwest and central Florida, south Georgia and southern South Carolina. Surveys have shown that areas of pine woods in the salamender's historic range have been reduced by more than 80 percent, a major factor in the amphibian's decline. Its attractiveness if the domestic pet market also represents a potential threat..

The flatwoods salamander now exists on private and public land in parts of Baker, Calhoun, Franklin, Holmes, Jackson, Liberty, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Wakulla, Walton, and Washington counties in Florida; Baker, Bryan, Evans, Liberty, and McIntosh counties in Georgia; and Berkeley and Jasper counties in South Carolina. It has not been found in Alabama since 1981.

The Service is seeking comments, suggestions, and any additional information on the biology, threats, distribution, population size, or current or planned activities and their possible impacts on this species. The Service will consider all comments and information submitted by February 16, 1998, before making a final decision regarding listing of the salamander.

A copy of the proposal can be obtained by contacting the Service's Jackson, Mississippi Field Office (601/965-4900).

-FWS-

RELEASE: R97-116


1997 News Releases

Go to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Southeast Region Home Page