Kingdom - Animalia

Phylum - Chordata

Class - Amphibia

Order - Caudata

Families in Illinois:

  • Ambystomatidae
  • Plethodontidae
  • Proteidae
  • Salamamdridae
  • Cryptobranchidae
  • Sirenidae




  • Tiger Salamander

  • Smallmouth Salamander

  • Blue-spotted Salamander

  • Marbled Salamander

  • Spotted Salamander

  • Silvery Salamander

  • Smallmouth on left, Mole Salamander on right

  • Redbacked Salamander

  • Redbacked Salamander - leadback

  • Redbacked Salamander

  • Zigzag Salamander

  • Slimy Salamander

  • Southern Two-lined Salamander

  • Four-toed Salamander

  • Four-toed Salamander

  • Eastern Newt eft phase

  • Eastern Newt adult phase

  • Longtailed Salamander

  • Cave Salamander

  • Cave Salamander

  • Dusky Salamander



  • have permeable skin
  • have permeable egg membranes
  • are constrained to moist habitats
  • have 4 limbs of approximately equal size - except sirens
  • have tail



There are approximately 650 species of salamander in the world, 20 of which are found in Illinois:


Ambystomatidae - The Mole Salamanders Ambystoma maculatum 3.png

Jefferson salamander Ambystoma jeffersonianum
Blue-spotted salamander A. laterale
Spotted salamander A. maculatum
Marbled salamander A. opacum
Silvery salamander A. platineum
Mole salamander A. talpoideum 
Smallmouth salamander A. texanum 
Tiger salamander A. tigrinum

 Salamandridae - True Salamanders

  • Most species are found in Europe and Asia
  • Most have toxic skin secretions
  • Illinois has one species Eastern newt Notophthalmus viridescens which metamorphoses twice and has three distinct life stages:

Aquatic Larvae


Terrestrial Eft


Aquatic Adult


Three salamander species in Illinois are fully aquatic: