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Pacific Giant

Posted: July 16th, 2015, 9:50 am
by corey.raimond
I found some larval Pacific Giant Salamanders yesterday within 1 mile of the Seattle city limit. I find it very interesting that so many amphibians can survive in the area. I have also seen red-legged frogs, pacific chorus frogs, long-toed salamanders, ensatina and northwestern salamanders in the vicinity. It is also a "lifer" (I hate that term) for me. This fall when we get some rain I'll have to look for some adults for better photos.



ImageLarval Pacific Giant Salamander by Corey Raimond, on Flickr

-Corey

Re: Pacific Giant

Posted: July 16th, 2015, 10:54 am
by Fieldnotes
:thumb:

Re: Pacific Giant

Posted: July 18th, 2015, 11:48 am
by jonathan
Nicely done!

I found Pacific Giant larvae in 2 Portland streams this year, which puts me up to something like 7 streams that I've found them in within Portland city limits, and a couple other streams within the nearby metro area. Never would have believed that such large salamanders with moderately specific habitat requirements can do so well so close to an urban setting. It's a testimony to the good job those cities have done at preserving some meaningful habitat.

Re: Pacific Giant

Posted: July 18th, 2015, 6:15 pm
by FrogO_Oeyes
Pacific giants are incredibly common around the Portland area. They and Dunn's salamanders occupy almost every stream I've searched in the region.

The salamander in the OP's post looks like a Cope's giant to me. In the Seattle metro area I've found many Thamnophis ordinoides, and a couple of Lithobates clamitans. Sceloporus occidentalis is reportedly common in some 'beach' areas.

Re: Pacific Giant

Posted: July 21st, 2015, 1:32 pm
by AndyKraemer
Fun find!

Question: why is it you don't like the term 'lifer'? This could be an interesting conversation...

Re: Pacific Giant

Posted: July 21st, 2015, 2:39 pm
by Darian
I found this guy under a log in a Portland city park on 6/1/15, and again today July 21st under the same log (see the little circular black spot on the left side of the snout). Either these animals have a pretty firm home range, or the hot dry weather this year has salamanders on total lockdown, even in a relatively moist forested environment.

6/1:

Image

7/21:

Image

Re: Pacific Giant

Posted: August 4th, 2015, 1:18 pm
by corey.raimond
FrogO_Oeyes wrote:Pacific giants are incredibly common around the Portland area. They and Dunn's salamanders occupy almost every stream I've searched in the region.

The salamander in the OP's post looks like a Cope's giant to me. In the Seattle metro area I've found many Thamnophis ordinoides, and a couple of Lithobates clamitans. Sceloporus occidentalis is reportedly common in some 'beach' areas.
That's great Portland has a good quality of amphibians!

I'm assuming OP means original poster. If so, only D. tenebrosus is in the Seattle area.

Darian- interesting observation.

I don't like "lifer" because I don't have a "life list." I am generally turned off by people who make observing nature into a competition or try to boost their ego. I usually have a few targets, but sometimes non at all and just try to get out and see a small sliver of the diversity of life.