Reptiles & Amphibians


At Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge, we are blessed with an abundance of reptiles and amphibians! 

  • Snakes


     Various species of water snakes are common or abundant on Wheeler NWR, especially the yellow-bellied and midland water snakes. Venomous snakes include the copperhead, cottonmouth, and timber and canebrake rattlesnakes. Rat snakes of mixed or uncertain subspecies are likely the most abundant snake. Black racers, black kingsnakes, corn snakes, eastern ribbon snakes, and eastern garter snakes are also common.


  • Turtles


     The more commonly seen turtle species are the yellow-bellied pond slider or mix of yellow-bellied and red-eared pond slider, common snapping turtle, eastern box turtle, southern painted turtle, eastern spiny softshell, and the river cooter.  

  • Frogs & Toads


     Many different species of frogs and toads are found on Wheeler NWR. Recent call counts and field observations indicate that the more common species include northern leopard frogs, northern spring peepers, gray treefrogs, green treefrogs, upland chorus frogs, Fowlers toad, and eastern narrow-mouthed toads.

  • Lizards & Salamanders


     Spotted and marbled salamanders are also common. Cave salamanders occur in the cave entrances with slimy salamanders using these and rocky ledges.The ground skink and the five-lined skink are two of the most common lizard species. Little or no formal data are available to provide population estimates for these species. However, general observations indicate that the number of amphibians and reptiles have declined in recent years on Wheeler NWR.