Fire Salamander

Salamandra salamandraFire Salamander

Description: Fire Salamanders have narrow bodies and a particularly thin tail. The backside is black with a few red and orange spots or bands. The ventral side is just as dark colored as the top. Although the tail and extremities of females are shorter than males, they are overall larger, commonly reaching 2.5–3 cm. They also posses poisonous parotid glands, located just behind the eyes.

Range: Iberian Peninsula to Iran and North Africa to northern Germany.

Habitat: With the exception of mating season, these salamanders are only active at night. They can be seen under logs, stones, and inside rodent burrows.

Reproduction: This species is typically viviparous, meaning that, rather than laying eggs, they give birth to fully metamorphosed juveniles.

Diet:
Wild: Insects, mollusks, and the larvae of other amphibians.
Zoo: Crickets

Fun Fact: The name Fire Salamander may have come from Ancient Greece. The Grecians would toss logs onto their fires, unaware that there were animals living inside them. When the salamanders came scurrying out of the fire, Grecians assumed that these animals had been spawned by the fire.