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Anderson’s Salamander

Animal Essentials

Scientific Name:
Ambystoma andersoni
Park Location:
Aquarium
Origin:
Michoacán in Mexico
Habitat:
Lake Zacapu

Amazing Facts

Certain species of Salamander such as Anderson’s are capable of regeneration. This means if they lose a limb during a fight or predation they can simply grow a replacement!

Salamanders are amphibians that look like a cross between a frog and a lizard. They have long bodies, their skin is moist and usually smooth and they have long tails. Their eggs are clear and jelly-like, much like frog eggs.

Anderson's Salamander is from Laguna de Zacapú in Mexico. They retain their juvenile features and remain in an undeveloped larval form. The mature salamander has medium-sized external gills with bright red filaments, and a prominent caudal fin. The salamanders are totally aquatic and spend their whole lives in the same body of water.

This salamander is a relatively recent discovery, first described by Branden and Krebs in 1984. Anderson’s Salamander is named after James Anderson, who did extensive fieldwork studying amphibians and reptiles in Mexico.

The major threat to the wild population is the pollution of Lake Zacapu where it is found. Additionally, the animals are heavily hunted for food by locals, and predatory fish have been introduced into the lake. Their population is unknown however they are a protected species by the government of Mexico.

Threat Status

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